Lance recovers from the pitlane to the points at the 2023 Formula 1 US Grand Prix.
Despite both Lance and Fernando starting in the pitlane, we came away from Circuit of The Americas with more points. Lance finished Sunday’s race in P9 while Fernando made his way into the top 10 but had to retire with floor damage. Lance was later promoted to P7 after two drivers were disqualified for technical infringements. Brake problems put Lance on the back foot on Friday as he was limited to just five laps in Free Practice One. He qualified 19th for Sunday’s Grand Prix and Fernando qualified 17th. On Saturday, a brake issue ended Lance’s Sprint race early while Fernando finished 13th. Those issues also hampered our efforts to optimise our newly updated AMR23. As a result, we made set-up changes with the cars in parc fermé, which forced Lance and Fernando to start Sunday’s Grand Prix from the pitlane.
Both drivers made steady starts to the race: Lance on new Hard tyres and Fernando on used Mediums. They soon began to make their way through the field and both were in the top 10 by Lap 20. Soon after, Lance pitted for Mediums and was followed by Fernando – both drivers pulling off overtakes in the second stint of the race. The pair pitted with around 25 laps to go and made quick work of climbing back into the top 10. However, Fernando had to retire a few laps before the chequered flag with floor damage. Lance, on the other hand, scored six points in P7 and brought our tally up to 234 points.
Read what Fernando, Lance and Team Principal Mike Krack said on Sunday.
It was a great comeback race for us with a lot more pace in the AMR23. We were aiming to score some points having started from the pitlane, but, unfortunately, we had to retire with some damage. It’s a shame as during the race today we looked quite competitive. We collected a lot of useful data and comparisons on the two cars today that will be crucial heading into the remaining races.
Finishing ninth after starting from last in the pitlane is a positive result after a tough couple of days here at COTA. It’s good to be back in the points after some difficult races. The set-up changes we made to optimise the performance have definitely put us in the right direction; we were much more competitive today. I had good grip in the corners, especially once we fitted the Medium compound, and I was able to make a few good overtakes going into Turn 12. We’ll be working hard to take this momentum into Mexico next week
Mike Krack, Team Principal:
Scoring two points with Lance represents a good recovery when you consider everything that has happened this weekend, including starting from the pitlane with both cars. Lance managed his race well, looking after the tyres and delivering really competitive times, as well as making decisive overtakes. Fernando looked destined to score points too, until he picked up floor damage, which forced him to retire with just seven laps to go. We gathered valuable data on the latest updates today. That data will pay dividends for the upcoming races as we continue to tune the set-up of the AMR23. I want to thank everyone at the AMRTC in Silverstone and here in Austin for their efforts over recent weeks to get the new parts on the car. We look forward to getting back on track next weekend in Mexico.