Aston Martin has confirmed Felipe Drugovich will replace Lance Stroll if the Canadian is unavailable for the Bahrain Grand Prix.
Stroll injured himself while training on a bike ahead of pre-season testing and missed the entire week in Bahrain while starting his recovery, with Drugovich completing two half days in his place alongside Fernando Alonso.
On Saturday evening, team principal Mike Krack was coy on the possibility of Sebastian Vettel showing interest in filling in for Stroll if needed — having only retired from Formula 1 at the end of last season — but the team has now moved to clarify its back-up plans if Stroll is not fit enough to take part in the season opener next weekend.
“The team will continue to give Lance every chance to race, pending recovery from his injury,” the team stated in an update. “Should he not be fit to compete, then Felipe will drive the AMR23 alongside Fernando.”
Stroll is expected to try out in the Aston Martin simulator this week back at Silverstone before a final decision is made. In the event that Stroll starts the race weekend but needs to withdraw, then Drugovich would need to take part in at least one practice session or qualify the car in order to be able to race.