Pierre Gasly hailed Saturday in Baku a “fantastic day” for AlphaTauri as he delivered his best qualifying performance for the team to claim fourth on the grid for the Azerbaijan Grand Prix.
After finishing fastest in the final practice session, Gasly was just three-thousandths of a second from bumping F1 championship leader Max Verstappen from third in Q3.
He said: “I couldn’t really have hoped for anything better. We were first in FP3, fourth in quali, fighting for pole with Ferrari, Mercedes and Red Bull, which is something that never really happened to us.
“All weekend, surprisingly, we have been very, very strong, I felt super good in the car and managed to really push it to the limit and happy, didn’t miss much to jump Max and be in the top three.
“You always think here and there I could have been slightly better, but at the end of the day, we delivered a very strong qualifying, especially considering we focused a bit more on the race.
“We kept two hard tyres for the race, which gave us only four sets of softs for the quali compared to the others so I think we are in a good position and I am very excited for tomorrow.”
Gasly clicking with AlphaTauri machine
Gasly achieved his best result of the season last time out in Monaco of sixth, and while that street circuit is significantly different to Baku, the French driver believes the team must try to learn from why things are going so well.
“Sometimes, once it clicks with your driving, I just know what it’s going to do, what I have got to do to make it work, and it responds to what I want and what I expect,” added Gasly.
“I just go out there and do my thing and the lap time seems to be always pretty good this weekend. I think we clearly need to analyse everything.
“Monaco we were pretty strong and the car is set up in a different way to a normal track so maybe there are things we can learn but P4, we equal our best quali with the team and we have good cards to play for tomorrow.”
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