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Formula 1 British GP

Krack: British GP was “damage limitation” for Aston Martin F1

Aston Martin Formula 1 boss Mike Krack says that the British GP was “damage limitation” for the Silverstone team after Fernando Alonso finished seventh, just pipping Alex Albon.

Fernando Alonso, Aston Martin AMR23

Alonso lost out to both cars of Red Bull, McLaren and Mercedes, but Krack sees the positives as the team still outscored rivals Ferrari by six points to three, although Mercedes made a net gain of 18 points.

The battle for second in the constructors’ championship is currently led by Mercedes on 203 points, with Aston third on 181 and Ferrari fourth on 157.

"Verdict is damage limitation,” said Krack when asked about the weekend by Motorsport.com. “I would say we did not have the performance that we wanted to have on Saturday, Sunday.

"And to go away with scoring more points than Ferrari, I think you can call it damage limitation.”

In three of the last four race weekends, the team has not been in the fight for the podium after Alonso secured six top-three finishes in the opening seven races of the season.

“I always said you cannot have all the time podiums,” said Krack. “We had six podiums in 10 races. I always said there will be also moments where it will be a bit more difficult. And we had now a race where clearly on Saturday, we didn't have the pace that we wanted to have.

“I think going into the race we said we need to rely on our strength today, which is I think is pitstops, race starts, execution, strategy. And it played out quite well. All these we could rely on today. And I think this allowed us to come home still with decent points.”

Fernando Alonso, Aston Martin AMR23, arrives on the grid with mechanics

Fernando Alonso, Aston Martin AMR23, arrives on the grid with mechanics

Photo by: Glenn Dunbar / Motorsport Images

Asked if he was concerned about McLaren joining the fight at the front, he said: "Concern is the wrong word. I think it confirms what I have always been saying, we need to be careful defining too quickly a pecking order. You will remember me saying this. So we have a swing up and down.

“We have seen in Austria, for example, Mercedes were quite down, in Barcelona, they were very strong. We were very strong in Canada, it's not long ago, where we were fighting for the podium.

“So that is why I always say that we need to wait two, three or four tracks to realise or to be really sure about where the pecking order is. And I think we should maintain that.”

Krack insists the team wants to see how the AMR23 stacks up at a range of different venues that are coming up, including the extremes of Hungary and Spa on consecutive weekends.

“So like a rolling average, in engineering terms, where are we,” he said. “I think then before the shutdown, we can say where we can have a better representation where we are, and this I think will allow us also to define from the race expectation where we have to go.

“I think we also need to consider really we have a lot of races coming that are very different characteristic to the previous ones.

“The calendar is such that you have the less downforce races in the beginning, depending on how you classify them, and there are more races to come down where maybe we can be better. These are all things that we have to see based on the analysis of the next three, I think.”

Krack acknowledged that the team has to focus on improving its one lap place, with Alonso having started only ninth at Silverstone.

"Qualifying is key,” he said. “Especially in circuits where you struggle more to pass like the one that will come, although it is now much easier than it used to be. But I think qualifying performance is key to finish at the front in F1 wherever you go.

“The statistics do not lie. It’s a general improvement that we need to bring on to the car. But it starts with analysing your weaknesses from the current events.”

Krack acknowledged that the team is now expected to be in the top-three fight, hence the focus on the races when it doesn’t.

"I think that is the interesting or the nice part of it,” he said. “The level of expectation has risen from six podiums. I think we sit here now with six podiums in 10 races. It's normal, that the expectations are high.

“And we will continue to try and fulfil the expectations. I think it's a compliment that we have these expectations, it shows that we have done the job."

He added: “Even if it was six podiums in 22, I think it will be very respectable season compared to where we come from, and what our targets for the season were. But we will not give up now and let it go."

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