Aston Martin suffer huge testing blow despite lightening pace

Lance Stroll is hoping to be fit the for season-opening Bahrain Grand Prix, following a cycling accident in Spain.

After being hyped up so much ahead of pre-season testing at the Bahrain International Circuit, running in Bahrain started in the worst possible way for Aston Martin, after causing the first red flag of the season.

Aston Martin have been tipped by many as a side to watch ahead of the forthcoming season; however, everyone was watching the Silverstone-based team for the wrong reasons during the opening minutes of pre-season testing, as the team’s car was lifted onto a recovery vehicle.

Reigning Formula 2 World Champion Felipe Drugovich grinded to a halt in the opening minutes of testing, with Aston Martin’s reserve driver having stopped the car at Turn Four.

Drugovich is, of course, filling in for Lance Stroll during pre-season testing, with the Canadian having been ruled out following a “minor” accident whilst cycling in Spain.

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It was a massively unfortunate start for Drugovich, who would’ve been hoping for a clean start to pre-season.

In typical pre-season fashion, a car cover was immediately thrown over the AMR23, in a bid to give none of the car’s details away to their competitors whilst it was stationary.

Thankfully, Drugovich was back out on track not too long after the car was returned to the garage, suggesting that the issue was nothing too significant.

Regardless, whilst the car was stationary on the circuit, shots of Fernando Alonso looking less than impressed quickly circulated on social media, with some joking that unreliability follows the Spaniard wherever he goes.

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Alonso’s 2022 campaign at Alpine was ridiculed by reliability issues, with the 41-year-old likely hoping that he doesn’t suffer a similar fate this season at Aston Martin.

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The double World Champion will get his opportunity behind the wheel of the AMR23 Thursday afternoon, with the team yet to announce their plans as to who will drive on Friday and Saturday.

As the morning session entered its final 30 minutes, Drugovich was the slowest of the 10 drivers on the circuit, with the Brazilian having posted a 1:36.907, four seconds slower than Max Verstappen.

The times are, of course, fairly irrelevant during pre-season testing, with it being largely unknown what exactly the teams are running in regard to fuel and set-up.