Aston Martin mechanics describe Melbourne rescue job as ‘best moment of the year’

Sam Cooper
Sebastian Vettel helps to push his Aston Martin. Melbourne April 2022.

Sebastian Vettel helps to push his Aston Martin after it broke down in FP1 for the Australian Grand Prix. Melbourne April 2022.

Two of Aston Martin’s mechanics have named their work to get both cars out for the Melbourne qualifying session as their highlight of the year.

Michael ‘Mikey’ Brown and Scott Taggart are the number one mechanics for Sebastian Vettel and Lance Stroll respectively and have been looking back over Aston Martin’s season so far.

Featuring on Aston Martin’s new ‘At The Bar’ series, presented by Peroni Nastro Azzurro 0.0%, they were asked about what event left them feeling “super satisfied” and both were unanimous with their decision.

The Australian Grand Prix could have been a disaster for the team. In free practice three, Vettel went off the track between turns nine and 10 and, after skidding through the gravel trap, collided with the barrier side on.

His front wing was ripped to pieces and his left front wheel also dislodged itself making a qualifying appearance look unlikely.

What was already a nightmare situation for Aston Martin got a lot worse when, just as the session was drawing to a close, Stroll also went off the track and badly damaged his car. The Canadian’s shunt was not quite as big as his team-mate’s but a large question still loomed as to whether he would be able to take part in qualifying.

With just two hours between the end of FP3 and Q1, it was a race against time for both cars to be ready and while Stroll’s was completed in time, it was looking like that would not be the case for the four-time World Champion.

As the session got underway, the mechanics from Stroll’s car jumped in to help those working on Vettel’s and it was his team-mate who would inadvertently help in that regard.

An on-track incident between Stroll and his Canadian compatriot Nicholas Latifi brought out the red flag, giving Aston Martin enough time to repair Vettel’s car for the restart.

Taggart, who works in Stroll’s team, described it as the “best moment” it what was “the worst situation.”

“What happened in Melbourne,” he recalled. “Both cars had had a crash and to see everybody from Lance’s crew jump automatically straight onto Seb’s car to try and get that one out because there was a chance to get that one out. To see that car leave the garage was probably the best moment so far this year, even though it was the worst situation.”

Brown has been Vettel’s number one mechanic throughout the German’s time at the team and highlighted his Baku podium as his fondest moment as Vettel gets set to retire.

“For me, on Seb’s side I think it was just the first podium in Baku,” Brown said. “It was exciting and it was nice to see everyone back on the podium. Nice to see him back on the podium. So for me, that’s a standout memory I think.”

“A good celebration afterwards!” Taggart joked.

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