Pierre Gasly admits he is going to try and learn from Max Verstappen in search of more performance after a frustrating Austrian Grand Prix.
Verstappen has beaten Gasly and previous teammate Daniel Ricciardo in every race that both Red Bulls finished since last year’s Canadian Grand Prix, a run of 24 races. With the 21-year-old winning in Austria, the 23-year-old Gasly finished a distant seventh and says he needs to turn to his teammate to try and find a way to become more comfortable with his car.
“I’m really happy for Honda and for Red Bull, especially to win at home is something massive,” Gasly said. “I’m really happy — the new upgrade seems to work well, and Max won the race so he was obviously fast, and that’s positive.
“From my side, I have a lot of things to work on and I’ll take on a lot from him. He seems to be really comfortable with the car so I think that’s the main thing. We’ll keep pushing until we improve our performance.”
Gasly was ahead of Verstappen at one stage of the opening lap on Sunday but ended up finishing sandwiched between the two McLarens and nearly getting lapped, something he says was down to his own mistakes managing tires.
“I struggled with the traffic at the beginning and spent quite a lot of time there, and it kind of was a snowball effect with the time we spent behind, the hotter everything gets. I struggled to get past Kimi (Raikkonen) and the cars around (him), and after the pit stop I pushed too hard and destroyed the front tires after the first few laps. And after that, I just struggled with blistering. It wasn’t the best management on my side, so it makes the afternoon quite tough.”
Gasly admits he was fairly happy with his car at the Red Bull Ring after showing good pace during practice and the first part of qualifying, but says he needs to ensure that translates into performance when it matters most.
“The main thing was getting stuck in traffic always makes things a bit harder if you can’t really go through it as fast as ideal, and then after the second stint was just blistering and struggling with the tires. I didn’t feel less comfortable but didn’t have a great management of the tires and it makes the second stint quite hard.
“I think we’ve showed some more speed. Unfortunate that it was in free practice and you want to be fast on the Saturday and Sunday afternoon. But overall I think from FP1, FP2, also Q1 and Q2 there are improvements but for sure they are not as big as we want. But there are a few things and we’ll keep pushing to get the results we should get and I’ll keep working to get the performance right.”