Lance Stroll has said his aim for the 2021 season is to finish P5 in the Drivers’ Championship, with his team P3 in the Constructors’ standings.
2020 was the Canadian’s best season yet as he finished P11 in the standings with 75 points.
However, given the car he had and the fact his team-mate Sergio Perez claimed P5 with 125 points, it still was not a great year for him. It is, therefore, no surprise he is hoping to do much better in 2021.
Specifically, he wants to secure a top-five finish and thinks he will have the car to do so, and says Aston Martin’s target is P3.
“Finishing third in the championship would be great as a team in the constructors,” he said, quoted by RaceFans.
“And from my side, pushing to finish up in the top five in the championship, I think that would be a great achievement.
“Last year, we would stay in fourth for such a long time and then we had some misfortunes that really set us back. But it goes to show the potential is there if we just execute.”
— Aston Martin Cognizant F1 Team (@AstonMartinF1) February 8, 2021
In the long term, Stroll has even bigger aspirations.
Given that a driver outside of Mercedes and Red Bull has not been crowned World Champion since Jenson Button in 2009 and there are plenty of immensely talented young drivers coming through, Stroll winning a title seems a long shot.
Nevertheless, being 22, he thinks time is on his side and genuinely believes he can become the second Canadian, after Jacques Villeneuve, to get his hands on the biggest prize of all.
“You’ve got to believe,” he said.
“I think every driver up and down the grid believes it. I don’t think we would be here otherwise. I’m still 22, just turned 22, so I think I still have some time ahead of me.
“It comes down to a lot of things. I think experience is a big part of it. Just gaining experience, learning from your mistakes and improving as a driver as well as being in the right car. All those things are critical to try and do it.”
With Sebastian Vettel partnering Stroll, Daniel Ricciardo at McLaren and Fernando Alonso at Alpine, winning the midfield battle will be harder than ever for Stroll and the other less experienced drivers.