Stroll: Williams decline is shocking

Lance Stroll says Williams’ lack of pace is “shocking” after following up their Bahrain disappointment with two of the slowest times in China.

Last time out in Bahrain, Stroll and team-mate Sergey Sirotkin would have been last if it hadn’t been for penalties for those ahead of them.

It was more of the same in China on Friday. Stroll was slowest of the 20 runners while Sirotkin finished his day in 16th place.

Compare that to last year when both Williams cars made Q3 in Shanghai.

“There are a lot of things to sort out – our straight-line speed, our handling. Everything needs work,” Stroll told Sky F1.

“In Bahrain, it was shocking how big of a step backwards we had made. I was four tenths slower than I was last year.

“We were losing time on the straights. We haven’t improved. We improved a little bit in the corners, but not even close to the extent we were hoping for.

“But then in Australia, we improved the lap time a little bit compared to last year when Felipe [Massa] was in Q3.

“It’s a bit up and down, but it’s very early days. There are still 19 races to go, and there’s a lot more to understand and to look at before we come to a conclusion.”

The Canadian went onto explain that while Williams had not improved on last year’s weaknesses, the FW41 also didn’t have last year’s strengths.

He added: “All in all, we haven’t improved our package. We are giving up in areas that we were strong in last year and we haven’t improved to the extent we wanted to in the areas we were aiming to improve in.

“Overall, it’s not where we want to be. But we have identified a lot of problems and hopefully we have a good idea of how to improve the car and how to make big steps in the right direction.”

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