“This sport is a roller-coaster of emotions sometimes,” Jewish Canadian F1 driver Lance Stroll said, of experiencing the thrills and spills of a dramatic 2023 F1 Australian Grand Prix race at Melbourne’s Albert Park circuit last Sunday, before sealing fourth place – his best result so far for Aston Martin.
The 24-year-old was sixth on the starting grid following solid qualifying sessions on Saturday, when conditions ranged from dry to driving rain.
Sunshine returned for Sunday’s race, but there were crashes galore anyway, an unprecedented three red flags, and engine failures.
Eight of the 20 drivers failed to finish.
Stroll collided with Charles Leclerc’s Ferrari on the opening lap, and had another white knuckle moment after the second standing restart, when losing control at turn three, ending up on the gravel.
Crucially, he was able to continue after both incidents, maintain his position, and avoid further trouble.
He then benefited from Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz copping a five-second penalty for clipping Stroll’s teammate, Fernando Alonso.
That moved Stroll up to fourth, while Alonso came third for the second straight race, finishing only behind Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton, and winner Max Verstappen from Red Bull.
After another safety car restart for the final lap, no overtaking was allowed.
Stroll said, “Overall, we’ve come away from a chaotic race with a solid haul of points for the team, and to be second in the Constructors’ Championship, after three races, is very positive.”
Jewish test driver for Ferrari, Robert Schwartzman, was also at Albert Park, while Israeli F2 driver for PHM, Roy Nissany, came ninth in his sprint race, but crashed out in the final laps of the feature race.