Fernando Alonso had defended Lance Stroll’s form as he’s been “very unlucky” of late and that makes it “very easy to be hard” on him in the media.
Failing to score a single point in a scruffy Monaco Grand Prix, one in which he qualified P14 to Alonso’s P2, it was noted that Mercedes are now just a single point away from Aston Martin in the Constructors’ Championship. And that’s despite Alonso bagging five podiums in six races.
While the Spaniard has raced his way to the champagne celebrations with four third-placed results and then a runner-up finish in Monaco, Stroll has yet to grab even one podium and has managed just 27 points to his team-mate’s 93.
Alonso insists that’s not because his team-mate is “missing any pace”, rather it’s down to luck – bad luck at that.
“He has been very unlucky the last two events,” declared the 41-year-old.
“If we go back to Bahrain, driving with one hand [after breaking his wrist in a pre-season cycling crash] he was very fast. Then Jeddah he had the exhaust problem when he was in front of the Ferraris in P5.
“Then in Miami we were risking too much probably in Q1 and that compromised the race. And in Monaco the debris from Lando’s car, the McLaren, completely compromised the whole weekend.
“Obviously this put the headlines, very easy to be hard on that.
“I think if you see the whole weekend even in Monaco in FP3 he was within one tenth and a half of the fastest. He has provided the right feedback, info and strategy about everything.
“So I really hope for him that he has a little more luck because I don’t think that he’s missing any pace. It’s just opportunistic moments that were not in his side.”
As for Stroll, the Canadian accepts he’s had some “bad weekend” but that’s how it goes in F1.
Asked in Thursday’s press conference if he was ‘owed a bit of luck’, he replied: “I don’t really think that. I mean, it’s luck, things happen in racing, and we had some tough weekends.
“We had a retirement in Jeddah and I think we were having a strong weekend last weekend and then some damage in Q2 cost us an opportunity for good points on Sunday – and Monaco is all about Saturday really.
“So I think it’s just how it goes: there’s good weekends and bad weekends and yeah, like every other weekend I’m just coming into this one trying to get the most out of it. So, yeah, see how it goes.”