Stroll tested with Williams between Canada and Baku!

Posted June 26, 2017

Williams technical officer Paddy Lowe says Lance Stroll had a private test last week at the Circuit of the Americas, which contributed to his qualifying performance at the Azerbaijan Grand Prix.

Felipe Massa found himself at the wrong end of the timesheets against his team-mate Lance Stroll for the first time this season, finding himself outqualified by the Canadian rookie by half a tenth and forced to settle for ninth position.

Ricciardo and Bottas both congratulated the young driver as his father, Lawrence Stroll, looked on.

While his side of the garage was less than happy, his 18 year old team-mate raced into Q3 for only the second time this season, and edged Massa out for eight place by the finest of margins. "For sure, it's experience from my side that I gain every time I get in the auto, but I think there's also a lot of other things to it", continued the Canadian.

"This weekend we came back to the set-up from a few weekend's ago", he explained.

Stroll engaged in a dedicated 2014 Williams test programme during his European Formula 3 championship campaign last season in order to prepare for F1 this year, and Lowe said Stroll's familiarity with the auto combined with the extra track time helped accelerate his learning process between races.

Several drivers have fallen foul of Baku's tricky street circuit this weekend and Lowe pointed out that Stroll has not been one of them, further emphasising how the team believes he has improved since Canada. Sometimes it takes a couple of weekends off where you should be to figure "this is better".

Stroll spent the day behind the wheel of a 2014-spec Williams FW36, racking up mileage and sampling various basic set-up configurations! "It's a hard circuit, so to push here and leave the right margin is really tough". "Jumping in the auto in FP1 I felt really confident immediately with the track, the balance, everything kind of came together".

"There's a combination of reasons why". "We drifted away from that direction, we came back, and I feel a lot more confident with that balance and set-up. Everything has been going well this weekend and that brings the result".