Look back: 2023 Canadian Grand Prix

The 2024 Canadian Grand Prix is ​​fast approaching, so ahead of the race, we took a look back at what happened last time we visited Circuit Gilles Villeneuve.

After joining the calendar in 1967, the Montreal track on Île Notre-Dame officially became the home of Formula 1 in Canada for the 1978 season.

The 2023 edition of the Grand Prix was a crucial start to our season as Alex Alban raced to an impressive P7.

Here’s how the weekend unfolded in Montreal.

rain merit

Saturday saw wet conditions. However, as the countdown to Q1 began, the rain began to subside, and the team debated how close it was time to dry the tires.

Alex finished Q1 comfortably in P6 to advance. Then, as the rest of the drivers continued to set up the first laps of the second stage, our No23 was last and only on slicks.

The result proved decisive as Alphonso set three quick laps in a row to post himself on top of the timesheet as the other drivers continued to weigh their options.

As he crossed the line at the end of his third push, the rain started again and nobody could cover Alphonso’s 1:18.75 in Q2 – the fastest lap of anyone in all three qualifying sessions.

The rain increased after Q3, which prevented Alex from setting a clean lap before the red flag was called when Oscar Piastre hit the wall, and our No23 ended the day in P10.

Happy Sunday

Race day saw another great performance from Alex as his strong driver managed a one-stop strategy to bring home a season’s joint-best points.

Unfortunately for Logan Sargent, an oil leak inside his FW45 brought out the virtual safety car and ended his race after eight laps.

Alex had a strong run in P8 when George Russell crashed into the wall at turn 9. As a result, a full safety car was called in and our Thai racer boxed for a set of mediums.

From here, Alphonso put on a racing masterclass all around, while he carried out a single-stop strategy that saw his tires last 27 laps more than the average Hart C3 stint.

Scenes from Montreal Race Day 2023

By lap 40, our No23 was running in P7 on aging tyres, with George Russell for company, however the Mercedes driver could not find a way past and was forced to retire with 15 laps remaining.

This left Esteban Ocon on Alex’s tail for the last 15 laps, but despite everything Alpine threw at Alex, he could do nothing but watch as our Thai racer took the checkered flag.

Alex’s commanding defensive performance earned him F1’s Driver of the Day, 28.7% of the vote in his favor and a memorable race across the Atlantic.

This is the fourth time Alphonso has been awarded this award in his career and will set the tone for the rest of the 2023 season!

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