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Aston Martin still has budget left to keep developing 2023 F1 car

Aston Martin has said it still has plenty of budget left to develop its Formula 1 car through the remainder of the 2023 season. 

Lance Stroll, Aston Martin AMR23, leaves the garage

The Silverstone-based squad started the year as Red Bull’s main challenger, but has since had to face an increased threat from Mercedes, Ferrari and McLaren which have all made gains during the campaign. 

A recent dip in form was blamed on the side effects of an upgrade path that the team took, but Autosport also reported recently that the squad could have been hit by an FIA flexi wing clampdown that is understood to have impacted several outfits. 

Aston Martin believes that it has made progress in addressing its recent dip, and the team says that it is now ready to unleash an aggressive spend to bring further improvement to the AMR23. 

Performance director Tom McCullough explained that, while a lot of rivals were switching focus to their 2024 challengers, Aston Martin was still very much focused on improving the current car. 

“We've been targeting quite strong development throughout the year and we have budget to keep developing the car,” he said. 

“That's our aim, so we are bringing some steps all the way to the end of the championship really - as much as we can do.  

“At a certain point, you have to fully focus on 2024, but we're in the phase now where we're able to work on both cars.

“And even some of the lessons you learn on ‘24 you can adapt as well, whether it's in CFD, wind tunnel, or the mechanical side. So we're just pushing to the end.” 

Lance Stroll, Aston Martin Racing AMR23, Fernando Alonso, Aston Martin Racing AMR23

Lance Stroll, Aston Martin Racing AMR23, Fernando Alonso, Aston Martin Racing AMR23

Photo by: Erik Junius

While Aston Martin’s recent struggles had been difficult for the team, McCullough reckoned that there was some benefit to be had in it forcing the outfit to better understand the weaknesses of its car – which can help it focus on the right improvements in the future. 

“I think every time you bring a part to the car, you don't always bring parts that just offset the base level, you often are trading certain characteristics to get an increase in the map that you decided to go for,” he said. 

“When you actually bring those parts of the car to the track, it's about understanding what they're actually doing on the track relative to your development tools, the wind tunnel and CFD. Certain track characteristics also favour certain things as well.

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“We obviously brought the big update package to the car in Montreal, and the car was reasonably strong there, obviously fighting strongly with the second-fastest team.

“But the characteristics of that track are a little bit unique compared to some of the ones that we've been to recently. So understanding what the car's actually done and what we wanted to do going forwards is part of the usual job, really.” 

He added: “We've understood what we've done to the car. The developments that are coming in the second half of the season are already actually addressing some of the areas we're not as strong in, and I think really from Zandvoort onwards we're going to have some continuous development as we've done all year.”

Additional reporting by Filip Cleeren

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