Lance Stroll says the pace he and team-mate Sergio Perez showed in the Styrian Grand Prix puts Racing Point ahead of its midfield rivals in the Formula 1 pecking order.

After a disappointing qualifying performance in the wet, both Racing Points showed impressive race pace to come through the field to finish sixth and seventh after starting from outside of the top ten.

It wasn’t a perfect race for the Silverstone-based outfit with Perez dropping a place on the final lap - handing McLaren's Lando Norris fifth - after light contact with Alexander Albon resulted in a broken front wing.

While Racing Point didn’t maximise its pace, Stroll believes the team is potentially on a par with Red Bull, or at least, ahead of its main midfield competitors.

“I really believe today we debatably had the second quickest car, maybe the third,’’ Stroll said.

“We were definitely quicker than Renault, McLaren and a lot of our other competitors so that was really positive. It wasn’t the perfect race I think for both of us. I mean for Sergio starting 17th, that was a pretty good result - you’d probably have signed up for that before the race.

“From my side, there were definitely some frustrating parts to the race - getting stuck behind Ricciardo. The pace was there all race which is what is promising moving forward.’’

After a series of impressive fastest laps, Perez was able to challenge Albon for fourth place.

The Mexican admits he was ''very lucky'' to have only lost just one place after damaging his front wing.

“It was good to recover,'' Perez added. “We were all the way to P5, nearly P4 in the end. I was pushing really hard on Albon and I didn’t have any opportunity other than the one that I took and unfortunately I touched at the wrong angle.

“Basically, I understand a bit towards the exit - I am opening up the steering wheel while picking up the power then I broke the whole front wing. I was very lucky to lose just one position from that.''

Racing Point is currently under investigation after Renault launched a protest regarding the legality of its 2020 car, dubbed by many rivals as the 'Pink Mercedes' due to its similarities to Mercedes' 2019 title-winning W10.

 

 

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