WATCH: Vettel and Gasly vent their frustrations after Q2 exits in Sochi qualifying
As the McLaren, Ferrari and Williams garages delighted in Lando Norris, Carlos Sainz and George Russell claiming the top three positions in qualifying for the Russian Grand Prix, two drivers who were left disgruntled on Saturday evening were AlphaTauri’s Pierre Gasly and Aston Martin, after both made early exits in Q2.
Gasly showed strong pace across Friday, ending second practice P3 before going P6 in the first segment of damp qualifying on Saturday. But Gasly was left ruing AlphaTauri's failure to change him onto a new set of intermediate tyres in Q2, as he ultimately dropped out of qualifying after taking P12, his fury clear from the way he got out of his car as you can see in the clip above.
“Q1 we were very fast, Q2 we were very fast,” said a frustrated Gasly at the end of qualifying. “[But in Q2] we stayed out on tyres which were dead. I asked to box a couple of times. In the end we stayed out on used tyres. We clearly had the pace to be right there in Q3 until the end. Today we did a bad job and I don’t really understand why we didn’t box.
“Now it’s done,” Gasly added. “It’s not going to give us a better starting position, so we need to focus on tomorrow. It’s going to be dry, but honestly I don’t really know what to say now.”
Vettel had fared even better than Gasly in Q1, taking P4 in that segment – while he would ultimately only miss out on a spot in Q3 by 0.052s, beaten by the Ferrari of Sainz, who’d eventually qualify P2, much to his frustration, as you can hear in the video above.
“The traffic didn’t help,” said Vettel, “but I don’t like to blame it on that. For sure on that lap, I lost half a second and that didn’t help, but it’s a pain because I felt the car was very good today and I could have been much higher up than we ended up, so that’s disappointing.”