"Shocking" Turkish practice "more like rallycross than F1" - Gasly
AlphaTauri driver Pierre Gasly has said the "shocking" track conditions at Istanbul Park made Friday's free practice sessions "more like rallycross than Formula 1".
The track surface proved difficult for all as the new Tarmac laid just 10 days ago exuded oils, mixed with liquid from an attempt to clean the circuit overnight and cold temperatures in Turkey.
Although Gasly, who finished seventh in second practice, revealed the sessions were enjoyable, he said he and his team would have plenty of work to do to adjust to the conditions ahead of qualifying and the race.
"This morning was quite shocking," he said. "I enjoyed it, it was really fun but it was more like rallycross rather than Formula 1.
"It does feel different than what we are used to feeling in general so it was a pretty fun way to discover this track.
"I think the grip came up a little bit this afternoon and also with the softer compound but generally a lot slower and a lot more slippery than we expected.
"I think we need to revise a bit what we want to do for quali and the race with the car with all the simulations we ran because we expected it to be a lot faster than that."
During the circuit's original seven-year stint on the F1 calendar, Istanbul Park was hailed for its overtaking opportunities and general ability to promote captivating racing.
Even though the tentative nature of driving throughout both practice sessions raises concerns about such close racing, Gasly believes the difference in tyre compound performance may at least contribute to an exciting event.
"I can tell you it is going to be spicy, for sure," he added. "There is no doubt about that but we just need to make sure we do our thing properly.
"The tyres are playing such a big factor and we can see it with the gaps which are a lot bigger than usual.
"If you manage to get the tyres in the right window, you can extract a lot more performance so I think there are a lot more things we need to understand. Hopefully, we can take a step forward tomorrow."
GPFans is a multi-platform, multi-language brand dedicated to Formula One coverage. We bring you all the ins and outs of the sport, 24/7, everything from up-to-the-minute news and features to the latest viral stories and clips.
We believe that a new generation of exciting, outspoken drivers will make F1 more popular than ever before, and we want to give our users access to as much of their heroes as possible, on and off the track. From Lewis Hamilton to Max Verstappen, Daniel Ricciardo to Sebastian Vettel, we provide in-depth analysis of every every Grand Prix in the season, from Australia to Abu Dhabi.
With Formula One under the new ownership of Liberty Media, how the sport is being covered is evolving, and GPFans will look to be at the heart of this progression into new media, as one of the fastest-growing sites covering the king of motorsports.