Lance Stroll has played down the significance of his crash towards the end of the opening free practice session for the Spanish Grand Prix and was positively impressed by Racing Point’s upgrades.

The Canadian driver dropped a wheel on to the grass heading into the fast Turn 9 at Circuit de Catalunya which sent him off track and into the barrier where he suffered heavy damage to his front wing and front left wheel.

With extensive repairs required on his Racing Point F1 car, Stroll was sidelined for the opening 30 minutes of the afternoon practice session but after getting back out on track he was confident of not losing too much practice time ahead of qualifying and the race this weekend.

Despite his off, Stroll remains positive with Racing Point’s hefty upgrade package which the team delivered for the first European race of the season and is optimistic for this weekend.

“Aside from that [the crash] I’m pretty pleased with how the car is feeling,” Stroll said. “It’s definitely I think we’ve made some progress and it’s definitely been better than the previous few rounds so that’s a good sign and we’ll see what we can do tomorrow. Thanks for the guys for getting the car back on track, it wasn’t easy. We’re okay. Just a small hiccup.”

Racing Point team principal Otmar Szafnauer has confirmed Stroll’s FP1 crash has damaged some of the new parts but says the team will recover before FP3.

“Some of the new parts on Lance’s car were damaged at the end of this morning’s session, but we are working hard to get everything back to the new spec for tomorrow," Szafnauer said.

Stroll ended FP2 13th fastest, 1.5 seconds down on timesheet-topper Valtteri Bottas, but six-tenths of a second faster than Racing Point teammate Sergio Perez down in 18th place - but the pair were running separate programmes to evaluate the team’s upgrades.



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