Gasly laments ‘unlucky’ Hungarian GP weekend as his 50th F1 race is ruined by technical problems
It’s not unusual to have a tough time at some point over a race weekend, but Pierre Gasly suffered three days to forget at the Hungaroring.
It was supposed to be a weekend of celebration for the AlphaTauri driver as he marked his 50th start in Formula 1, but it began in the worst possible fashion as he failed to take part in FP1 at all due to a power unit concern. While that was addressed by FP2, the weather meant Gasly had completed just seven laps by Saturday.
Still, all of that appeared to be forgotten as the Frenchman made impressive progress into Q3, only to be once again be struck by misfortune as Honda engineers detected an issue in his power unit’s data and opted against running in the final part of qualifying. After a change of engine, Gasly lined up 10th for Sunday’s race – but that lasted just 15 laps before a gearbox problem forced him into retirement.
“It was a very challenging weekend for us, with a mechanical issue in every one of the three days,” Gasly said. “I was quite unlucky, and that’s a big shame. We managed to do a good qualifying and in these conditions, wet to dry with possibly more rain before the end, for sure there was something to play for. I drove [with the problem] since the beginning of the race, we tried to fix it on track but we didn’t manage it.”
The weekend was less troublesome for AlphaTauri team mate Daniil Kvyat as the Russian finished 12th having made the choice to pit for slicks after just one lap of racing.
“I managed to overtake quite a few cars in the first lap, I was very happy, but after we did the pit stops, I somehow ended up behind some of the people I had already passed on the first laps,” Kvyat said. “It was a bit strange, so I need to review the race to understand what we could have done to keep the position, because I think there was a chance to finish in the points. Finishing in P12 just feels not so satisfying. It’s not like I drove for nothing, but there isn’t a lot of satisfaction to finish like this.”
Despite the lack of a result at the Hungaroring, Kvyat reflected on a significant spell of learning from the first three races, feeling that the 2020 AlphaTauri AT01 could still be made to suit him even more.
“It was important because I’m still understanding my car, my engineer and my crew,” he said. “We learned a lot and every lap is important. They have a lot of data from the race, from qualifying, so when we come to Silverstone we’ll be trying different solutions to try and suit my driving style. That’s what usually happens – you need to play a bit with set-up options, and I’m quite looking forward to that, to be honest. I’ll try to find good settings.”