Gasly says AlphaTauri at their ‘best level they have ever been’ as he returns to scene of maiden podium
Pierre Gasly has a lot to smile about on his return to Interlagos – where he claimed a maiden Formula 1 podium in 2019 – fresh off a P4 finish in Mexico. And with AlphaTauri level on points with midfield rivals Alpine in Sao Paulo, the Frenchman had high praise for his team.
Gasly qualified P5 and finished a stellar fourth in Mexico City weekend to take his best finish at the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez and put AlphaTauri on 106 points – equal with Alpine – as the Faenza team fight for P5 in the standings. At the end of the season, fifth would represent a best ever constructors’ championship finish for them or their previous incarnation, Toro Rosso.
“The car has been very good there, everything went really well strategy-wise, car-wise, and I was able to really push the entire race to get home in fourth position,” said Gasly as he looked back on Mexico. “My best Mexican result, and yes, I think it’s a great to show this form for the last four races especially considering we are tied on points with Alpine.
“I really believe this season they [AlphaTauri] are at the best level they have ever been in Formula 1, at least from all the seasons I have been doing with them, they are really on another level and hopefully they can be rewarded at the end of the year,” he added.
On Thursday, Gasly returned to the circuit at which he took a first-ever F1 podium, for Toro Rosso, having drag-raced Lewis Hamilton out of the final corner and up to the chequered flag in a grandstand finish in 2019. He said the emotions came flooding back on his track walk.
“Well it was incredible, obviously your first podium in Formula 1 is always a moment [that is] very strong, very, very intense in terms of emotion that you just don’t forget,” he recalled. “Even just doing the track walk this morning was kind of exciting to rethink about that finish with Lewis, going up the last corner to the line.
“Yes, it’s a place I love; I must say the track is very nice, I obviously have these memories of the beautiful race we had with my first podium and the Brazilian fans are really intense as well – really passionate, and on Sunday the energy is really intense – so I’m really, really happy to be back,” he concluded.