Racing Point F1 team manager Otmar Szafnauer said Lance Stroll had shown great potential in the 2019 Formula 1 season.
Lance Stroll was promoted to Racing Point in 2019 after his father, Lawrence Stroll, decided to buy out the assets of Team Force India with the help of a Canadian consortium.
With a fourth-place finish as his best result at the German Grand Prix and six top-10 finishes throughout 2019, Szafnauer says his first season with Stroll has highlighted areas where the Canadian needs to improve.
Szafnauer admits that he is also excited about the basic performance that the 21-year-old driver is able to build on.
“I see great potential, he’s a fast race car driver. “Szafnauer told Racer.
“What we need to teach him are details. We don’t need to teach him how to drive fast, he knows how to do it. He loses about 0.2s per lap compared to Checo [Sergio Perez] in qualifying on average and in the race it’s a little bit lower.
“So it’s not that [we have to teach him], it’s all the other things that go along with Formula One racing, and you can’t teach that overnight. »
“It takes time. He had a great first year, scored good points for the team and this season I’m sure he’ll be even better. He’ll be on that trajectory – that learning curve, the steep part of it – so he’ll do even better in 2020. ” concludes Szafnauer.
In 2019, Lance Stroll finished the year in fifteenth place in the drivers’ standings with 20 points scored, compared to 52 for his teammate Perez.
When asked how he thought he compared to his Mexican team mate, Stroll was bullish about the deficit in points.
“Definitely in the second half of the season, he really got a lot of momentum going, and I think it’s just his knowledge – he has been with the same team for five, six years and has knowledge of setting up the car and managing the tyres.” says Stroll.
“A combination of all those things.
“It’s great to have him across the garage for me, just picking up on details here and there.
“But at the end of the day, at this level, you have got to kind of be your own artist on the track.”
He added: “I think it’s about understanding how to improve some of my weaknesses, I can only speak for myself, but how to build on some of my weaknesses and then hold on to some of my strengths.
“So if you’re always chasing the guy that’s next to me in the garage, you are never really going to be able to beat him right?
“So you have to kind of be creative in your own way. And I think it’s just about balancing that out.
“There’s definitely been things that I picked up from him, especially towards the beginning of the year when everything was new to me.
“Now I’m looking at next year and I’m trying to just kind of focus on my own thing and work with my ‘controllables’, what I know will bring me success.”