Aston Martin defend controversial decision

Aston Martin raised eyebrows recently, but team principal Mike Krack has defended the move.

Mike Krack surprised some by protesting that not enough time deductions had been handed out at the Austrian Grand Prix.

Some would argue the opposite, as the FIA dished out five-second penalties on track limit infractions to Lewis Hamilton, Yuki Tsunoda, Esteban Ocon, Carlos Sainz, Kevin Magnussen, and Logan Sargeant.

Krack said: “We’re not afraid to upset people if it is for the cause of the sport and also for our own advantage.

“We knew this would create a little bit of turmoil.”

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“At the end of the day, we have to do what is right for the team. That is why we decided to launch a protest.”

Krack believes that this protest will “teach other teams a lesson,” pointing to the penalties that the Aston Martin team received in 2022 – and how they responded.

The principal claimed: “Our drivers’ ears were bleeding because we told them not to exceed limits because the penalties would come.”

He noted that ten drivers received no penalties so it “was possible to stay within the limits.”

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Krack was questioned about the duo of Fernando Alonso and Lance Stroll.

He said the idea of Stroll matching Alonso was an “ambitious target” as Alonso is “one of the best drivers in the history of the sport.”

However, he remarked: “Lance has all the talent and all the possibilities to achieve that. He needs to learn. He needs to learn from Fernando but keep his own way of working.”

“I think by the end of the year they will be on par.”

Krack acknowledged Aston Martin’s weaknesses compared to the big three of Red Bull, Mercedes, and Ferrari.

He commented: “We told him (Alonso) about our weaknesseses, where we are as a team, and that we have a lot to learn.

“We want him to be part of this learning process and use his input for us, as a team, to grow.

“He’s challenging us a lot. He’s challenging us in every meeting, in every race weekend.”

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“It has proven to be a great learning exercise for someone with so much experience to be challenging you.” 

“We want to move to the front. We want to be part of the big players.”

He says that the servicing of the Aston Martin facilities in Silverstone, which has a new factory, was evidence of the team’s desire to reach higher levels.