Gasly rues missed opportunity to turn the screw on P5 rivals Alpine after US Grand Prix retirement
AlphaTauri’s Pierre Gasly endured his third no-score in four races at the United States Grand Prix, after a suspension issue ruled him out of the running – with the Frenchman left frustrated at not having been able to close the gap more to fifth-placed rivals Alpine in Austin.
Promising pace from both AlphaTauri drivers saw Gasly and team mate Yuki Tsunoda make a double Q3 appearance for the second consecutive race, with Gasly taking P8 on the grid. But things started to unravel quickly for the Frenchman, with a sensor issue found on his car pre-race – before Gasly’s suspension succumbed after just 14 of the 56 laps, forcing him into retirement.
READ MORE: Tsunoda survives early soft tyre stint to nab first points since Hungary, in his ‘best race of the year’
“It was quite eventful,” said Gasly of his race. “We had a sensor problem on the grid, which the team managed to fix. But then after the start of the race, we had a suspension failure which got worse lap by lap until the moment it completely failed, so we had to retire the car.”
Gasly at least had the comfort of watching team mate Tsunoda claim P9, to shrink the gap to AlphaTauri’s non-scoring rivals Alpine down to 10 points in their battle for fifth place in the constructors’ – with Toro Rosso/AlphaTauri having never finished higher than P6 in their history. But Gasly felt that a chance to score more points had gone begging in Texas.
“Being fully objective, I think we didn’t have the pace to fight the McLarens and Ferraris,” he said. “But a ninth place, and the two cars in the points, was possible.
“It's very frustrating because we know every point counts at this stage in our midfield battle. It would have been really good to go until the end of this race.”
READ MORE: How Red Bull pulled off their aggressive strategy to win in Austin - and just where did Mercedes' FP1 pace go?
AlphaTauri Technical Director Jody Egginton, meanwhile, said that the team would leave no stone unturned in resolving Gasly’s suspension issue, as the team now prepare to take on a triple header of races in Mexico, Brazil and Qatar.
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“[Pierre’s suspension issue] is something we need to ensure we have understood and resolved ahead of the next race,” said Egginton. “It cost us some crucial points, which is unfortunate for Pierre and the team. Overall, the package has shown a good level of performance here in Austin, so the objective is to continue this form and keep the pressure on for fifth in the constructors’ championship.”
Alpine and AlphaTauri's fight for fifth