Pierre Gasly has enjoyed his best Friday of the 2021 F1 season, finishing in P2 in both sessions.
“It’s been a very good Friday, the best of the season so far I’d say. Inside of the car it doesn’t feel that easy, but the lap times are looking really good. I think in terms of balance we can do even better for tomorrow, so we’ll try and work on that tonight. Our target is of course to be as far up the grid as possible but we’re obviously realistic, we’re looking very competitive at the moment, so we’ll hope to be up there with McLaren and Ferrari again in Quali.”
“It was good out there today, with the car looking quite strong so far. We tried some different set-ups to gather important data for Quali and the race, which is really important, as we’re at a new circuit. The car performed well on the Mediums but I struggled a bit more on the soft tyre, so we have some work to do tonight to try and improve in this area. Overall, I think it’s been a good day, we’ve just got to put it all together when it counts. Overtaking looks like it’ll be quite difficult here, so it’s going to be important to get a good starting position for the race, then we can be in a good place to score points on Sunday.”
Jonathan Eddolls (Chief Race Engineer)
“Coming to a new track always means there is a lot to cover on a Friday. So, we had a busy run plan across both cars, with the main aim being to understand the circuit and therefore the set-up requirements, tyres and aero configuration. The process is made harder with FP1 happening during the hottest part of the day and FP2 during the early evening, with around 15°C difference in track temperatures across the sessions. Having said that, we were able to cover our run plans and all test items, so far we’re looking competitive, particularly over the short runs, which were very good for both drivers. The longer runs were a bit more of a challenge for the tyres, so for sure there is some work to do for tomorrow, but we have captured a lot of good data for analysis tonight and we have a great team of engineers who will work relentlessly to extract the maximum performance. I am confident that we can still improve the car overnight and show a good performance in Qualifying tomorrow.”