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What the teams said - race day in Canada

11 Jun 2017

A round-up of all the action from the Formula 1 Grand Prix du Canada 2017 in Montreal...

Mercedes

A good start by both drivers saw Hamilton leading and Bottas third at the end of lap one. When Verstappen retired, it promoted Bottas to P2, and from there it was serene progress for Mercedes as they recorded their first one-two of the season. In doing so, Hamilton cut Vettel's lead at the top of the championship, and Mercedes leapfrogged Ferreri to lead the constructors' battle. The icing on the cake was fastest lap for Hamilton, meaning he completed a Grand Slam once again.

Lewis Hamilton, 1st

"It's been such an incredible weekend. I just couldn't be happier with how it's gone and I'm so grateful for this result. We came away from Monaco and we were scratching our heads, but we pulled together and look what we achieved. We came here with a much better understanding of the car and we delivered a real blow to the Ferraris. Valtteri did a fantastic job too and this is our first one-two finish together. We've scored a big load of solid points and it's well deserved. It's crazy to think I had my first pole and win here 10 years ago. The race actually felt very reminiscent of 2007, in terms of how it unfolded. It's a long race here, especially when you're out there on your own, but I knew the car would hold together and it did perfectly."

Valtteri Bottas, 2nd

"I'm so happy for us as a team to bounce back the way we did this weekend. It's so impressive to see how the team has reacted in the last two weeks - how it's worked and improved. I've never seen a group of people so determined to win and to get back on top, so to get the one-two finish today, it's amazing. I tried my best to be aggressive and to get ahead of the Ferraris off the start and it worked, but I had a bit of a lock-up there which compromised my first stint. I lost some time behind the Red Bull and then the Force India after the stop, so we went for the Soft tyre for the second stint, but I didn't quite have the pace. But I brought the car home for some great points."

Toto Wolff, Head of Mercedes-Benz Motorsport

"That feels absolutely great. We have finally taken a 1-2 finish and done so at a track that we expected would be difficult for us - and which certainly was for us last year. Lewis delivered a stellar performance this weekend: a pole lap that was almost scary when you watch the onboard, then a totally dominant race. Likewise, Valtteri struggled with the car yesterday but he got everything right today to complete a perfect day for our team. Ever since Monaco, the guys and girls in the factory have been flat out. There was no weekend and people working 24/7 to better understand our problems - credit goes to so many people. So to bounce back in this way shows the calibre of the group that we have in the team. But the secret to this weekend was to keep the ball flat, stay calm, analyse our problems and come up with solutions. So this is the time to keep our feet on the ground, keep working hard and take it one race at a time. We saw some encouraging signs today but we need to working in just the same way to translate them into more success in Baku."

James Allison, Technical Director

"Not every Grand Prix win can deliver the same breathless cut and thrust of the race we saw one month ago in Barcelona - but this is nonetheless an extremely satisfying team result after the disappointment of Monaco a fortnight ago. We came racing back on all cylinders here and made important headway in both championships. It's our first one-two finish of this season and will allow us to approach the next race in Baku with a spring in our step."

Red Bull

Verstappen made a fantastically brave start, darting around the outside of Vettel to grab second position. Sadly for Red Bull he was unable to take the fight to Hamilton, after he was forced to pull over with an energy store issue. That promoted Ricciardo to third, a position he held on to despite pressure from both Force Indias and a freshly-shod Vettel in the closing stages.

Daniel Ricciardo, 3rd

“It was tough out there today. When we put the softs on I thought it’s a good thing to do to get to the end. (Sergio) Perez was on me for a bit and then there were a few laps when I was able to pull away. It looked like he was struggling but maybe he was just having a breather and then he had a second attack. I couldn’t afford any mistakes, especially in the last sector, because if they get the DRS and get a run it’s hard to keep them behind. I had to be close to perfect in terms of not making any errors but it wasn’t easy as the grip was low and the wind was crazy out there. Not the easiest third place but when I saw the chequered flag I was like: yes I can finally breathe. I had zero intention of doing a shoey again, but the crowd was chanting and then Sir Patrick (Stewart) got involved so I thought: alright, we might be on here. I think it turned out pretty good.”

Max Verstappen, DNF

“The way the race ended for me was very frustrating after such a good start. I think a podium was possible but once again we come away with nothing. The start was really good, straight away I felt no wheel spin and could just put the power down and make some places. I had a little bit of contact with Seb (Vettel) on the first corner, running wide there means it can sometimes happen. From there on the pace felt good and I was looking after the tyres and brakes as we had no chance of catching Lewis. I was just concentrating on doing my own race when I suddenly lost all power and everything shut down. I have had a lot of disappointments recently, I guess that’s racing but sometimes you get tired of it.”

Christian Horner, Team Principal

“An excellent podium for Daniel today, who really didn’t make any mistakes, despite huge pressures from Force Indias and Ferrari behind. We banked track position early on with the soft tyre with the intention of going to the end of the race and that worked out well today. It was a great shame for us to lose Max after 11 laps. He had an unbelievable start which propelled him into second place by turn two, and then after an audacious move to take the lead at the restart he was looking competitive for second place when a suspected energy store failure caused an instantaneous retirement. Very tough on Max but I’m sure his time will come soon. Leaving Montreal and one of our more challenging tracks on the calendar with a podium is a positive result and good to see Sir Patrick Stewart having fun on the podium.”

Ferrari

Neither Ferrari started well, with Vettel being squeezed out by Verstappen and losing part of his front wing. The ensuing pit stop left the German 18th and last, before a brilliant recovery drive saw him P4 at the flag. Raikkonen meanwhile had looked feisty on fresher ultrasoft tyres and might have halted his team mate's progress through the field, but for a late brake issue which dropped him to seventh.

Sebastian Vettel, 4th

"I think my start was not particularly good but at the same time not that bad either. The car was good, I think it was clear that today we could have been better than fourth, but that's how we finished and what is done is done. Overall, we know we have a strong car. Looking back at the start, Bottas and I were trying to go from the inside when Max came around but these things can happen. Then, with the safety car on track I did not realize that the damage to the front wing was as bad as it actually was, we only noticed it at full speed. There was also some additional damage to other parts of the bodywork, hard to say what they cost me in terms of laptime, but the car did not feel as the one I had driven in the past two days. Yet the pace was there and I would have liked some more laps to finish on the podium, the trophy here looked nice... That was my target and I missed it. But we are growing up as a team."

Kimi Raikkonen, 7th

"At the start I got wheelspin off the line and obviously we lost quite a few places. From that moment it was not an easy race: I struggled in the first few laps, it was difficult to get past. We decided to switch our tactics to two stops to create a speed difference with fresh tires. We had a very good pace again and we were nicely going back close to the guys in front. Unfortunately, we had the issue with the brakes and we could not really use our speed. In the last ten laps I had hardly no brakes; it's a pity but at least we could bring the car back and get some points. It was not an easy day for the team but this is how it goes sometimes. If this is our bad day, then we have to take it and go forward."

Maurizio Arrivabene, Team Principal

"Unfortunately, our race was compromised right from the start, when Seb's car was damaged so he was no longer able to give it his best shot. Initially, our data showed the damage was not too serious. It was only in the following laps that the wing broke, causing further damage to the turning vanes and the floor. As for Kimi, towards the end he had a problem with the braking system control. Right from tomorrow in Maranello we will carry out a detailed analysis of the race, making the most of the data gathered as we prepare as well as possible for the next round in Baku."

Haas

Grosjean and Sainz squabbled over the same piece of track at the start, leaving the Frenchman needing a new front wing. He changed onto the supersoft tyres at the same time, and made these last the duration of the race. By keeping out of trouble for the rest of the afternoon, he was the lucky recipient of the final point on offer when Alonso retired two laps from the finish. Magnussen meanwhile overtook Vandoorne under the Virtual Safety Car, earning himself a five-second time penalty. He came home 12th.

Romain Grosjean, 10th

“Well, our race started very badly with the front wing change on the first lap. Then we knew the only way to get a decent strategy was to stay out and make those tires last for 69 laps, which is pretty good for supersofts. We got there. I am very unhappy with Carlos’ (Sainz) maneuver at the start – what he did to me going into turn three. It was very, very dangerous. I’m glad the car didn’t have too much damage. We changed the front wing and got going again. It was a tough race. We needed a bit of luck at the end, which we got with Alonso retiring, and we managed to get a point. It’s great for the team, but we missed a bit of speed today.”

Kevin Magnussen, 12th

“With regard to the penalty, I went on power anticipating the end of the Virtual Safety Car, and I thought I’d probably passed him (Vandoorne) before it ended. I wasn’t sure, but I let him past anyway before passing him again at the next corner. Normally, when you give back the position, that’s fine. I gave it back, and then overtook him straight away. He was in front and he had every chance to be in the position he was before the Virtual Safety Car. I feel it’s very unfair the judgement from the stewards. These things happen. My shot at points was over. I fought very hard and had a good start. The opposite strategy didn’t work, but we were still there. It hasn’t been my weekend but, hopefully, it will turn soon.”

Guenther Steiner, Team Principal

“It was a very exciting race for us. It didn’t start well with Romain being hit by Sainz at the beginning and dropping down to last after having to come in for a wing change. Normally, your race is done then, but everybody kept on fighting and Romain did a fantastic job to get the car home with 69 laps on one set of tires. That’s astonishing – very well done. Kevin was up there in the points as well. But then he got a penalty for overtaking under the Virtual Safety Car. He gave the position back, but it was decided he needed to get the penalty. All in all, I’m pretty happy with the weekend. As much as it looks like we didn’t do what we should be doing, we got a point, meaning we’ve scored points now in five out of seven races this year – and in one of those we had a DNF (Did Not Finish). I think if we’re always around there, we can always score points. That’s what we’ll try to do. If the challenge is high, we keep on fighting.”

Williams

Massa was in the wrong place at the wrong time after being slow off the grid, and was collected by Sainz's out of control Toro Rosso, ending his race on the first lap. Stroll sensibly did his best to keep out of trouble in the first part of the race, and after pitting for supersoft tyres, steadily did battle in the midfield. Knowing which fights to take part in and which to leave well alone, he completed a mature drive by earning his first points of the season - and in front of a home crowd to boot.

Lance Stroll, 9th

"I am just happy for myself, for the team, for everyone. The balance of the car was good all race. I was in a flow. I knew we had good straight line speed in the Williams. I chose my overtakes at the right times, sometimes I could have done them a lap earlier, but it was a bit risky so I did it a lap later and stayed patient. James, my engineer, was giving me good communications throughout the whole race about what was happening around us. We just stayed cool headed and took it to the end and P9. It was about things falling into place and getting everything to work with no issues and being able to do the pace we know how to do. It means the world to me being able to finish a race in the points and be able to see those Canadian flags up in the air at my race."

Felipe Massa, DNF

"I’m so disappointed to be out after just three corners. I was a complete passenger in the collision. I think Carlos was hit by somebody, but I was the only car that he hit. It’s a shame to finish the race like that, especially when the car has been so competitive all weekend and we could have scored a good amount of points."

Paddy Lowe, Chief Technical Officer

"A huge congratulations to Lance. He’s the first Canadian in Formula One since Jacques Villeneuve, and now he’s scored his first points at his home race. It’s a great story. Given the difficult start Lance has had to his Formula One career, this feels like a race win to us. It was an incredible drive. He showed some fantastic race-craft, great overtaking and he really earned those points today. From 17th on the grid up to ninth, including a battle with a double world champion, which he took in his stride. I think today’s result will boost his confidence going forward and will give him some real momentum. On the other side of the garage, Felipe had an unfortunate race. He actually had a good start, but then lost a few places as a result of the jostling that normally takes place at Turns 1 and 2 at this race. He was then collected by Carlos, through no fault of his own. With the pace of the car this weekend it’s very unfortunate. We could have scored some very good points. We’re now looking ahead to Azerbaijan. The car should be reasonably strong there so we’ll give it another go."

Toro Rosso

After yesterday's incidents, Toro Rosso might have hoped for a quieter race. It was not to be with drama before even the start, when Kvyat stalled on the grid. He got his STR12 going and dutifully overtook the field to reclaim his grid spot, only to receive a time penalty for doing so. Worse was the come when Sainz tangled with Grosjean at the start, losing control and sliding into the barriers. Sainz was adjudged to be to blame and has received a three-place grid drop at the next race. To top off a torrid day, Kvyat later retired with technical issues. It was Toro Rosso's first double DNF of the season.

Daniil Kvyat, DNF

“A very disappointing day. Our problems already started during the formation lap – my engine stalled, so I had to catch all the cars before the Safety Car line, which I didn’t manage to do so I got a penalty for it… But we were still going for P9 as the pace was mega good today! Unfortunately, during my pit-stop we had a problem and then we retired… It was too late to do anything after losing so much time in the pits anyway. I did everything I could do today but what’s annoying is that every time we have very good pace something happens or goes wrong… It’s very frustrating, we deserved a reward today.”

Carlos Sainz, DNF

“What a tough start to the race – I had a good start and was in P12, trying to overtake Fernando around the outside of Turn 2… He got better traction than me out of there so I focused on positioning myself to try and attack him into Turn 3 and, all of a sudden, I touched with a Haas that was on my right-hand side… I have to say I never saw the car there, it’s simply a dead angle in my mirrors so I never knew he was there. If I had realized I was there, of course I would’ve been more careful and left some space. Once we collided I was just a passenger, crashed into the wall and that was the end of my race unfortunately. I’d like to say sorry, especially to Felipe, who received a touch from me… I just couldn’t do anything to avoid it. It was a big crash, but I’m fine. Unfortunately, the whole weekend has been a bit difficult for us, starting with not being able to run in FP1, then yesterday’s qualifying and today’s accident… It’s now time to focus on Baku; luckily we have 20 Formula 1 races so we can forget this weekend!”

Franz Tost, Team Principal

“Our Canadian GP race weekend has been a difficult one – it all already started in yesterday’s qualifying session, where we didn’t manage to get the cars into Q3. We started the race from P11 with Daniil and P13 with Carlos. Unfortunately, Daniil’s engine stalled at the start of the formation lap – we need to investigate how this happened, because there’s no excuse; an engine should never stall and there must be a technical solution to avoid this from happening. The regulation allows the driver to catch-up until the first Safety Car line but as all the drivers use the complete width of the track to warm-up their tyres, it was difficult for Daniil to overtake them in order to get back to his position without taking any risks. Therefore, he just missed overtaking Alonso before the Safety Car line – it was also too late for him to go into the pit-lane – so he got penalized for this. Daniil did a very good race and was very competitive, putting in some really good lap times. We then had to call him in for his pit-stop and for him to serve a ten-second penalty that was in addition to the drive through he had already been given, but we suffered a problem with the rear-right wheel-nut. Therefore, we decided to retire the car because, at this stage, we were two laps behind. Regarding Carlos, he had a reasonable start but then collided with Grosjean at Turn 3 and this was the end of his race. Unfortunately we leave Canada without scoring any points and with a bag full of work to do for next race in Baku.”

Force India

The Force India cars had looked competitive all weekend and they didn't disappoint come race day. They were running a solid fourth and fifth for much of the race, keeping Ricciardo ahead very honest. Ocon however, was unable to get past his team mate despite much fresher rubber. That led to a number of heated radio exchanges, with Ocon insisting that he could get past Ricciardo if Perez would let him by. The Mexican was having none of it, and the messages became more urgent with Vettel closing behind. Ultimately, Ocon gave it a go only to have the door shut by Perez - and Vettel took the opportunity to slide through. The Ferrari was comfortably faster and Perez had to yield a lap later. Fifth and sixth is a decent result, but bittersweet with a podium in the offing...

Sergio Perez, 5th

“I’m pleased to come away with fifth place because it was a very intense afternoon. For nearly the whole race I was running close behind Riccardo in his DRS window and waiting for my opportunity to overtake. I could see he was struggling in certain areas and, as we started to come through the lapped traffic, I thought I deserved the chance to try and overtake him. I tried my best and really pushed hard, but it just wasn’t possible to make the move. It was the same situation with Esteban behind me for almost half the race, but it was only on the final lap that he got really close to me when we were lapping Ericsson. I knew Esteban had better tyre life because my engineers made me aware of the situation and I replied by asking the team to simply let us race. I think the team was fair and respected my view. The team always comes first and we raced hard, but fair. I always give my best and I’m very happy we could come away with so many points from this race.”

Esteban Ocon, 6th

“As a team we scored really important points today, but I am a bit frustrated by this result because I feel a podium may have been possible. This is the way racing goes and we have to look at the positives: we had a great car that allowed us to take the fight to Ferrari and Red Bull and that is quite impressive. I am confident it won’t be the last time we will fight at this level and it was an awesome feeling – a really enjoyable race. The team as a whole did a great job today - they gave me such a fast car and we can be proud of our work and of the points we have gained.”

Robert Fernley, Deputy Team Principal

“A fantastic performance and result by the team. The car has been competitive all weekend and it’s very satisfying to see us convert our potential into a good bunch of points. The battle between Sergio and Esteban was one of the stories of the race and showed how closely-matched they are as teammates. We clearly had the quicker car compared to the Red Bull of Ricciardo, but overtaking in Montreal is never easy and we spent almost the entire race in his wheel tracks. After the pit stops, Esteban was right behind Sergio and had a pace advantage thanks to his fresher tyres. We advised both drivers of the situation and considered switching them around, but ultimately we chose to let them race. They were tough with each other on the track, but it was a fair fight. Sadly we couldn’t contain Vettel, but picking up 18 points extends our points advantage in the championship. We now have scored more than twice the points of the fifth placed team. We also saw really competitive car pace this weekend and that’s encouraging for the races to come, especially Baku in two weeks’ time.”

Sauber

Wehrlein had to start from the pit lane after a gearbox replacement, and opted to try the supersoft tyre. He ditched these after one lap, but was unable to make inroads on the quicker ultrasoft rubber and propped up the field. Ericsson managed to finish two places ahead of his team mate, but was unable to catch up to the fight for the last point on offer. 

Marcus Ericsson, 13th

“Overall it has been a tough weekend, but I got the maximum out of the car in the race. We made a step forward with our tyre management throughout the race. The pace that I had was similar to our direct competitors for most parts of the race. Now we have to build on that and take those insights with us to Baku.”

Pascal Wehrlein, 15th

“It was a difficult weekend – for one because of the crash in the qualifying, and also because I could not keep up with the lap times of the competition. We have to make sure that we understand the reason for that. For now we are focusing on the upcoming weekend in Baku.”

Monisha Kaltenborn, Team Principal

“Even though we anticipated that this would be a difficult race weekend, the result is still disappointing. Despite the challenging conditions, Marcus put in a good, consistent and dedicated performance. Pascal wasn’t able to fully manage the tyres, and we are still in the process of analyzing the causes for that, especially regarding the changes in the aerodynamic configuration which we had to undertake before the race due to yesterday’s incident.”

McLaren

Vandoorne made an electric start, climbing five places amid the trouble at Turn 3, whilst Alonso lost out after taking evasive action across the grass to avoid the Sainz-Massa collision. The Spaniard recovered into the top ten after a long opening stint, and looked set to score McLaren's first point of the year before a late engine failure forced him to park his MCL32. He has still only seen the chequered flag once this season. Vandoorne at least did make the flag, trailing home 14th.

Fernando Alonso, DNF

“We were in the points with a couple of laps to the end but my engine gave up. I am frustrated, of course, but it’s not only about losing a point today, of course.

“As a driver, we try to come here and drive as fast as we can, so missing on that point is disappointing especially for the guys, who have been working so much day and night, preparing the car, preparing the strategy and taking care of every single detail.

“Our chassis feels quite strong in the corners, but we are being overtaken by everyone in the middle on the straights. It’s tough times.

“The support we have from the fans in Canada is great, so when my car stopped I thought we should give something back, and I went up the grandstand to give my gloves to the people who had been cheering me on.”

Stoffel Vandoorne, 14th

“It was a difficult race. I think we more or less knew that before the start. We found it tough on the straights, and also the amount of fuel saving we had to do today really hurt us. The closing speed of the other cars was really impressive, so we were a bit of a sitting duck. In the end, we made it to the finish, but it’s not the result we were hoping for.

“It’s incredibly difficult to stay with the group ahead, and when we can stay with the group we are vulnerable and don’t have the power to defend, so we have to invent some tricks to keep the other cars behind, and then it all starts to become very challenging. 

“There’s no point moaning about it – I’m just trying to get on with my job – but I just hope there will be improvements soon so we can actually start racing with the others.”

Eric Boullier, McLaren-Honda Racing Director

"For the first time this season, running in 10th place within spitting distance of the flag, we dared to hope.

"OK, what we were daring to hope for were hardly rich pickings: a solitary world championship point for Fernando, who had driven superbly all afternoon, as he's driven superbly every race-day afternoon for the past two-and-a-half years. But, after so much toil and heartache, even that single point would have felt like a victory.

"And then came yet another gut-wrenching failure.

"It's difficult to find the right words to express our disappointment, our frustration and, yes, our sadness. So I'll say only this: it's simply, and absolutely, not good enough."

Yusuke Hasegawa, Honda R&D Co. Ltd Head of F1 Project & Executive Chief Engineer

“Today was especially disappointing as Fernando was on course to score our first point of the 2017 season.

“Of course, it is not our aim to score the occasional point, but it would have at least been a step forward and a reward for all of the team’s hard work these past few races.

“After avoiding the first-lap incident, Fernando managed his race well and had consistent pace throughout. The team also did a great job with the strategy keeping him ahead of his closest rivals. Unfortunately, with just a couple of laps remaining, Fernando's PU lost oil pressure due to a mechanical issue. We won’t know the exact cause until we get the power unit back to Sakura for a full investigation.

“Stoffel had a great start to his race, but lost out during the Safety Car periods. Despite this, it was a step in the right direction for him today, and positive that he finished the race.

“There is still a gap between us and our competitors, and we must continue to improve our reliability. We cannot stay in our current position and we will maintain our tireless development in order to close the gap.”

Renault

Hulkenberg gambled on an early stop under the Virtual Safety Car, which dropped him back into the midfield. From there, he pulled off some good overtakes to climb back into the top ten and grab his fourth points finish of the season. Palmer tried the opposite strategy with a long first stint, and will rue his luck after finishing 11th for the second race in a row.

Nico Hülkenberg, 8th

“Today’s race was quite positive for us overall ; everything was running pretty smoothly although the wind was crazy at times ; blowing the car from left to right on the straight ! Obviously we were helped by some DNFs but nevertheless I found myself in eighth place and four nice points isn’t bad given this was a track where we were a bit worried on how good we were going to be.”

Jolyon Palmer, 11th

“We finished in P11 again today, two races in a row within touching distance of points. This is very frustrating, I lost a lot at the start with the mayhem, I lost positions then got stuck behind Grosjean for about 60 laps and couldn’t get close enough to attack him. I think the pace was a bit better and if I could have started a couple of places higher, we could have gotten into the points. The race was much better again, Q2 this weekend was positive, we just need to keep working hard.”

Cyril Abiteboul, Managing Director

“We had a good race today in Montreal, the results were positive and we’re happy to be resuming our series of points finishes after a frustrating retirement in Monaco. Today’s race allowed us to reduce the deficit between us and Williams, as we are aiming for sixth in the Constructors’ Championship before the mid-season break. Nico had a good race, with a very strong pace, finishing on the lead lap. He was able to stay focused and remain unaffected by the mayhem and penalties around him. Jo had a similar strategy and he now has two P11 finishes in a row. The priority moving forward is for him to qualify higher in order to get a shot at winning some points and contribute to the team’s effort to gain ground in the Constructors’ Championship.”

Pirelli

Mario Isola - Head of Car Racing

“Conditions today were more blustery than they were during the weekend and the race got underway with an early safety car. These factors added more variables to the strategy calculations, and so we saw many teams trying different approaches, while reacting to changing race circumstances. Hamilton’s long opening stint on the ultrasoft enabled him to complete the race on the supersoft: the same strategy adopted by Force India, which used it to challenge for the podium. Ferrari reacted to Vettel’s early first pit stop by then using a different approach to make up places at the finish.”