Lance Stroll says he never doubted his own ability after scoring his first top 10 finish in Sunday’s Canadian Grand Prix - becoming the second youngest points scorer in F1 history in the process.
Stroll has endured a difficult start to his rookie season with Williams, but showed improved form on home soil to come home ninth - a result that puts him in exalted company. He is only the third Canadian after Gilles and Jacques Villeneuve to score points, and is now second only to Max Verstappen as F1's youngest scorer.
“It is special,” said Stroll. “It feels so good in so many ways, you know words can't really describe it. All I can say is it's been a tricky beginning of the season. We've known we're capable of doing it, there's just been so much stuff in the way to get points, you know, contact, technical issues.
“Today we just had a clean day, and that's what I was saying at the beginning of the weekend: it's all about having a clean weekend, a clean Sunday and it will come to us and that's what happened.”
Having started 17th, Stroll battled his way up the order before holding off Fernando Alonso for several laps towards the end of the race before the Spaniard’s retirement.
“It's special to be able to overtake and fight, and it's not every race you get that - sometimes it's just boring and you finish where you start,” Stroll said. “But today wasn't like that, it was fun even though it was stressful with Alonso never giving up behind me. Every time I did a better lap he did an even better lap, and it just never ended.