Aston Martin Team Principal Mike Krack admits the side understood the “risks” related to introducing upgrades on a Sprint weekend at the United States Grand Prix.

The Silverstone squad unveiled a raft of new parts – including a new floor edge, diffuser, engine cover and beam wing – in its bid to recapture its early-year momentum.

However, Aston Martin encountered trouble in the sole practice hour ahead of qualifying on Friday, completing only 24 laps as both cars were hampered by brake fire trouble.

Consequently, the lack of track time to dial in its new parts resulted in Aston Martin sustaining its worst qualifying of the season to date with a double Q1 elimination.

Aston Martin elected to withdraw its cars to the pitlane for Sunday’s race, reverting Fernando Alonso to the pre-Austin AMR23 and leaving Lance Stroll with the upgrades.

Stroll was able to charge through to take 9th on the road, promoted to seventh after Lewis Hamilton and Charles Leclerc were disqualified, while Alonso was also on course for points until floor damage curtailed his involvement late on.

“You have to accept, you know, that after three days of really hard work, there is a couple of smiling faces in the garage, and this is also well deserved,” Krack contended.

“But you have also to see, you know, what a missed opportunity might have been, and this is the reality.

“So the fact is that on Friday, we should have done our homework, we didn’t do it and we had the consequences all over the weekend.

“Now, there is always a rule, don’t bring the upgrades to the Sprint weekend when you take this decision to do it, nevertheless, you know what the risks are and then you cannot complain when it happens. But it’s another lesson learned.”

Lance Stroll (CDN) Aston Martin F1 Team AMR23 in the pits with a brake issue. 20.10.2023. Formula 1 World Championship, Rd 19, United States Grand Prix, Austin, Texas, USA, Qualifying Day


However, Krack has denied that Aston Martin made the wrong choice by committing to bringing updates to its car amid the complications that arise on Sprint weekends.

Asked if the team would have opted for a different strategy in hindsight, Krack explained: “Well, you know, I think you need to differentiate. You cannot just say no.

“Yeah, you need to be aware of the risk and we lost the Friday due to preparation. Yeah, we were not working well enough, we overheated the front corners and we lost the session.

“And this is all, you know when you have only one hour, when we came here, we said we have to be 100% in this one session. If we have one glitch, you know, you don’t have the data that you want to have and we had the glitch and we didn’t have the data.

“So I think it’s manageable if you have no issues, I think it’s manageable to bring upgrade into a sprint and other teams are doing it, you know, it’s doable, but the risk is higher.”

Pressed to clarify which specification was better ahead of the remaining rounds of the triple header, Krack added: “You ask me Thursday, then I know.

“No, we need to do the analysis properly. I mean, we have now a couple of, we have some good data now because in the middle of the race, we had both cars driving behind each other with I think six or seven seconds difference and also no car in between.

“So there should be enough data to, to know by tomorrow or the day after what to do [for Mexico].

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