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Formula 1

Aston gives Drugovich first morning of F1 test in Stroll’s place

by Valentin Khorounzhiy
2 min read

Formula 2 champion Felipe Drugovich will stand in for the injured Aston Martin driver Lance Stroll on the opening day of Formula 1 pre-season testing in Bahrain.

Stroll has been ruled out of the entirety of the three-day test due to injuries from what the team described as a “minor accident” while training on a bicycle in Spain.

He is being assessed on a daily basis and Aston Martin has not yet committed to him being back in the cockpit for the Bahrain season opener in early March.

Motor Racing Formula One Testing Abu Dhabi, Uae

In the meantime, it will give the first session of the test – the morning running on Thursday – to Drugovich, brought on board as a reserve driver after his triumph in F1’s primary feeder series in 2022.

The team’s new signing Fernando Alonso will then take over in the afternoon, having already driven the new AMR23 car during a Silverstone shakedown alongside Stroll.

The two-time F1 champion has lamented the limited pre-season testing allowance on offer to F1 drivers, with three days to be shared between the line-up.

That means one day and a half for each race driver normally, and it’s not yet definitive whether Alonso will get any of the sessions that would’ve been originally designated for Stroll. Aston Martin says who’s driving on Friday and Saturday is “to be confirmed”.

Drugovich’s call-up for at least the opening session comes with fellow Aston reserve driver Stoffel Vandoorne having Formula E commitments this weekend, as the all-electric championship races in Cape Town, over 7000km away from Bahrain.

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