Aston Martin’s drastic improvement to get out of the midfield and compete with the frontrunners after the 2023 season opener has been outstanding.
The team finished in P12 and P17 in the 2022 F1 Bahrain GP. A year on, they have one driver on the podium, both drivers in the points, and overtakes on the likes of Ferrari and Mercedes.
Team Silverstone are putting this down to setting ambitious goals for themselves over the course of the winter break. In a report published by German outlet Auto Motor und Sport (AMuS), one of the team’s engineers said:
“We wanted the AMR23 to be better in all areas than last year’s Red Bull. When we actually exceeded these targets, we initially thought we must have made a mistake.”
This has also been backed up by Aston Martin’s impressive recruitment behind the scenes to bring in key members from top teams.
Lawrence Stroll was able to lure Red Bull’s chief aerodynamicist Dan Fallows to take on the role of Chief Technical Officer along with his colleague Andrew Alessi. They also brought in Mercedes aerodynamicist Eric Blandin to make up a super triumvirate to help their car development plans.
Aston Martin are also in the process of moving to a bigger facility after building a team of 750+ members. Their new facilities will be operational by April, and Fallows sees this as a big boost for their overall aspirations. He said:
“We are a team that relies a lot on collaboration. That is difficult to do in the current constellation. The new factory will change that.”
The team also has plans for a state-of-the-art, 360-degree simulator that could help Fernando Alonso and Lance Stroll improve their racecraft even further. However, this will not be available anytime soon.
Team Silverstone are also said to be considering severing ties with Mercedes and joining forces with Honda in time for the 2026 regulation changes. The Japanese manufacturer will be parting ways with Red Bull, who have already confirmed their impending partnership with Ford.
Should a deal materialize between Aston Martin and Honda, they could move from being a customer team to a works outfit in disguise, seeing as Honda is only going to be around as a Power Unit provider.
As things stand, the future looks bright for Mike Krack and co., and they could be the masters of their own fate very soon.
Aston Martin’s AMR23 called Red Bull’s closest replica by AlphaTauri boss Franz Tost
Aston Martin F1’s AMR23 has been likened to a close replica of the Red Bull RB19 by Scuderia AlphaTauri team principal Franz Tost.
Red Bull have been the team to beat since the new F1 regulations were put in place at the start of 2021. They have come out of the traps flying this season and could continue their dominance over the rest of the F1 grid.
The same cannot be said for their sister team AlphaTauri, who have regressed from being in the midfield to dropping toward the bottom of the grid.
Tost put this down to his team not being able to share intellectual property with Red Bull. In an interview with racingnews365.com, the Austrian said:
“We do everything, regarding the cooperation with Red Bull, which is [allowed in] the regulation. We get from Red Bull a gearbox, rear suspension, parts from the front suspension, hydraulics.
Tost then talked about what they could not share:
“The wind tunnel, we have to use separately. We use the same wind tunnel, but we are in the wind tunnel on Saturday, Sunday, and Monday, and Red Bull [are] in the wind tunnel Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, or something like this. We are not allowed to share anything.
“As you know, when we started our project [in 2006], we got everything from Red Bull. This was the best situation, but this was [subsequently] forbidden by the regulations.”
Tost also pointed to Aston Martin’s AMR23, which has a striking resemblance to the Red Bull RB19. He believes this is down to Team Silverstone’s recent recruitments.
“The Aston Martin looks like the Red Bull because Aston Martin took half of the aerodynamic employees from Red Bull. Of course, they build the same car and paint it green. This is for us, unfortunately, not the case, because we cannot take away leading people from Red Bull Technology and bring [them] to AlphaTauri. So, it’s a question of money, because these people for sure are not cheap.”
Aston Martin is currently second in the standings and will look to add to their initial promise later this week at the 2023 F1 Saudi Arabian GP.