P11 at Zandvoort ‘the best we could do’ says Pierre Gasly

Pierre Gasly crossed the line in P11 at Sunday’s Dutch Grand Prix, and although the French rider admitted to being disappointed to miss out on a top 10 finish, he believes the result was the best he and his AlphaTauri team could achieve.

Gasly started the race from 11th and on the soft tire and lost a place at the start to Esteban Ocon before being overtaken by Fernando Alonso’s other Alpine on lap 10. And after pitting on the medium tyres, made steady progress back. the order before changing to the hard tires.

And when a Safety Car appeared on lap 55, introduced by Valtteri Bottas that stopped on the track, Gasly pitted for the soft tire as he tried to make it to the top 10. However, after failing to pass Lance Stroll, he was forced to settle for a fourth scoreless finish in five races, although Gasly believes 11th was a “fair position” given the pace of his car.

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“P11 is never a great feeling,” Gasly said when asked how he felt after the race. “We tried, I think we gave our best. The race could have been a bit better, we lost a lot of time throughout the first stint, the second stint in traffic.

“And then once we managed to get out of traffic on the hard tyre, the pace was good, but it was too late, we lost too much on the start. Objectively, that’s the best we could do. Aston Martin was really fast, Lance It was really fast, all of a sudden the Alpines were definitely faster than us today. So yeah, there’s something else to look at, but I think that’s the right position for us.”

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Gasly battled past Lance Stroll’s Aston Martin for P10 late in the race

He continued: “However I think there are still some positives to take from this weekend, we knew this would be a track where we would struggle but the pace on the hard this afternoon looked competitive. We now head to Monza for the last of the European races, where I hope we can come back stronger.”

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AlphaTauri’s chief engineer Claudio Balestri admitted the team was disappointed at not achieving its points goal at Zandvoort, but turned his attention to next weekend’s Italian Grand Prix.

“Today the goal was to score points and unfortunately we didn’t get it,” said Balestri. “We started both cars on the soft, and we knew we needed to handle the tires carefully. In the first round fight, we lost some positions to [Esteban] Ocon and [Lance] Stroll, so for most of the first period we were P11 with Yuki and P12 with Pierre.

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“Pierre ran in traffic for 10 laps and therefore suffered more tire degradation, which means he also lost a position to Alonso, so after a few laps we called him to put on the media. We could see that the hard compound was very competitive with the other cars around us and for this reason we decided to stop Gasly and run the hard ones.

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“At the end of the race, when the Safety Car was deployed, due to Bottas stopping on track at the end of the main straight, we decided to stay out to take the lap off Pierre and then stopped on the next lap, adjusting the options. .

“When the Safety Car came in, Pierre was in P11, just behind Stroll, both on the same tyre, but the Aston Martin was very quick into the last corner and we couldn’t overtake him to get into the points. Now we have to change our thoughts to the preparation for the next race in Monza”.

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