Palmer paints a gloomy picture of Aston Martin’s test
Ex-F1 driver turned pundit and analyst, Jolyon Palmer, was struggling for positives when assessing Aston Martin’s Barcelona test.
The return of the Aston Martin brand to Formula 1 in 2021 did not begin with the most exciting first chapter as the team finished P7 in the Constructors’ Championship, ahead of other notable strugglers in the form of Williams, Alfa Romeo and Haas.
For most teams, 2022 represents a fresh start and provides new hope of being competitive thanks to the introduction of ground-effect aerodynamics forming a new foundation for Formula 1’s vision of the future.
Sebastian Vettel may have finished within the top 10 of the timesheet at the first unofficial in Barcelona test but, according to Palmer in his latest column for the official Formula 1 website, the AMR22 did not make a good first impression despite its stunning livery.
Riding those kerbs. 👌 pic.twitter.com/gGbZz5CTYD
— Aston Martin Aramco Cognizant F1 Team (@AstonMartinF1) March 3, 2022
“In Barcelona it was tough – from the outside at least – to spot any obvious signs that they’d made much progress towards the front end of the grid,” Palmer said.
“The car looked snappy and hard to drive, particularly in the low-speed final sector, and it was also the car I saw porpoise the most on one particular lap, as it was launched almost fully into the air down the start-finish straight.
“Sebastian Vettel had the better of the running, and looked the more likely to get a tune out of it as well, but they don’t look like they have the car in the sweet spot just yet.
“It could be the case that minor set-up changes can transform the performance though, as engineers are constantly getting to grips with how to maximise this new generation car.”
Speaking to the media, including PlanetF1, on a recent media call, new Aston Martin team boss Mike Krack has conceded that they need to provide Vettel with a better car this season in order to convince him to stay beyond the end of this season.
“It’s clear that a guy like Sebastian, a four-time World Champion, he doesn’t want to be 15th or 12th or P8, that’s clear,” Krack said.
“It’s our task to deliver a performing car or, say, a performing structure because I think Sebastian is a clever guy.
“He will not be focusing just on this year’s car or whatever but focusing more on what is happening and if he sees the potential.
“So if we can manage to offer this to him, I think we have a chance to keep him for longer. To be honest with you, I have not spoken with him about it – this is something that will have to come.
“But all in all, it is our task to deliver the right package, then Sebastian will stay and other drivers will like to join [the team].”
Aston Martin only bought two Mercedes parts
Aston Martin only sourced two parts from Mercedes for their 2022 car.