Stroll gets Bahrain Grand Prix green light from Aston Martin after wrist surgery
Lance Stroll has been passed fit to race at this weekend's Bahrain Grand Prix after recovering from a wrist injury that threatened to derail Aston Martin's plans for the season opener.
Formula 2 champion Felipe Drugovich was put on standby after Stroll hurt his wrist in a freak cycling accident and had to miss pre-season testing.
There had even been speculation of a Sebastian Vettel comeback, after team principal Mike Krack initially refused to rule out the possibility of the German coming out of retirement.
However, that idea was knocked on the head eventually, and now Drugovich can stand down, too, with Canadian Stroll cleared to take part after undergoing surgery.
The team announced Stroll's involvement in a statement on their website, with the 24-year-old driver saying: "It was frustrating not to be out in Bahrain for the pre-season test and I was disappointed to miss the three days of running. However, given the injury to my wrist, the team and I felt it was best to focus on recovery so that I would be ready for this weekend and the long season ahead.
"It was an unfortunate accident – I fell from my bike when my tyre caught a hole in the ground – but thankfully the damage was not significant and a successful minor surgery on my right wrist fixed the problem very quickly. Since then, I've been working hard with my team to ensure that I am fully fit to compete this weekend.
"Now I'm ready to get my head down and concentrate on racing this weekend – something I'm really looking forward to."
Stroll will be entering his seventh season in Formula One and hoping for a first top-10 finish in the drivers' championship. He finished 15th overall last year, three places behind then team-mate Vettel.
Two-time F1 champion Fernando Alonso will be Stroll's team-mate in the new campaign, having switched from Alpine.