Lance Stroll is adamant he is “very far from reaching his full potential” in his young Formula 1 career after seeing out his second year in the sport.
Stroll entered F1 with Williams in 2017 following his dominant run to the European Formula 3 title with Prema Racing, scoring a podium finish and a front row start in his debut campaign.
The Canadian, however, endured a tough second season with the Grove-based outfit as they slipped five places in the constructors’ standings.
Stroll admitted Williams had been “surviving, not competing” in 2018 as it scored just seven points from 21 races. Despite the frustration of a lack of competitiveness, Stroll believes he’s become a more “complete driver” as he prepares to switch to Racing Point F1 in 2019.
“I don’t think it’s really fair to compare the two [or] judge the year in general. It’s been a fire-fighting season,” Stroll said as quoted by RaceFans.net.
“We picked up very few points but the few times that I picked up points were big highlights because we beat quicker cars around us. Same thing in qualifying: I scraped into Q2, got into Q3 in Monza, they’ve really been big achievements because it’s the performance has been really poor.
“All in all, I do believe I’m a more complete driver today than I was a year ago. But I think that I just haven’t been able to demonstrate that due to the package. Which is the nature of the sport, that’s how it goes some years and you have to accept that as a driver.”
Asked what area he felt he had gained the most from in comparison to his first year in F1, Stroll replied: “I would say the main thing is just experience.
“I’ve learned so much with another season under my belt of Formula 1, time with the engineers, expanding my knowledge of Formula 1, the tyres, racing, qualifying. Just with seat time you learn so much and that’s far from done.
“I still believe I’m very far from reaching my full potential. Every year I try to keep chipping away at it. Over the winter this year I’m going to reflect and work on my weaknesses and build on my strengths.”