AlphaTauri’s Pierre Gasly has praised his team for delivering a “pure performance” at 2021 Turkish Grand Prix, yet is anticipating a “complicated” US Grand Prix in Austin, Texas.
Gasly enjoyed a strong outing in Istanbul as he topped FP3 before qualifying fourth after a grid penalty was applied for pole-sitter, Lewis Hamilton.
The Frenchman went on to finish sixth in a damp race despite receiving a time penalty for colliding with Alpine’s Fernando Alonso at the race start, with Gasly now reflecting upon that weekend as a “pure performance” after fighting with Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc and both Red Bull drivers.
Gasly also took the positives from his race performance, as he said: “The race might have been even better without the penalty but finishing ten seconds off the podium behind two Mercedes, two Red Bulls and a Ferrari is really positive and it’s nice to confirm that we are back nearer the front of the field once again.”
USA is now next up on the calendar this weekend where Gasly hasn’t enjoyed “great races in two visits with non-points finishes.
Gasly though has watched the MotoGP races at Circuit of the Americas a few weeks ago and is anticipating a “complicated” fight throughout the weekend dealing with the various bumps across the circuit.
Speaking about what he is expecting this weekend, Gasly said: “Having watched MotoGP a few weeks back, the bumps which were already pretty bad last time we raced there, seem even more severe now. It will require some sort of compromise on set-up, but we won’t really know until we get there.
“I’m not particularly worried about it, because our car is working well everywhere at the moment and we just have to avoid any problems waiting to ambush us, so that we can continue to close in on Alpine in the championship.”
Tsunoda Anticipating “very interesting” US GP Weekend
Yuki Tsunoda meanwhile felt that he enjoyed a “pretty positive” trip to Turkey with strong pace throughout the weekend and throughout the early stages of the race as he battled Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton, until a spin mid-race saw him fall to 14th at the checkered flag.
Explaining what went wrong in the race, Tsunoda said: “In the race, I enjoyed my battle with Lewis, but after my spin, tyre temperatures were very low and I struggled for pace.”
The 21 year-old though took heart from his experience in Istanbul, adding: “It was an interesting weekend. I learned a lot and it will be good experience for the future.”
The next five races though will represent new challenges for Tsunoda who has never driven in USA, Mexico and Brazil, before he and the rest of the F1 grid make their first trips to Qatar and Saudi Arabia.
Tsunoda spent the gap between Istanbul and USA in the simulator learning the Circuit of the Americas track, which he described as “very interesting” with the first sector in particular impressing him as “like a rollercoaster.”
Like Gasly, Tsunoda also noted the issues that MotoGP riders faces earlier this month but is hopeful that the issues have been sorted, saying: “I saw that the MotoGP riders were complaining about the track surface, so we will have to see if they have managed to do anything about that in time for this weekend.”