Frenchman Pierre Gasly was on cloud nine after his first experience of testing a Formula 1 car at the Circuit de Catalunya on Tuesday, having run 128 laps for Scuderia Toro Rosso.
The Red Bull Junior driver, who is racing in the GP2 Series with the DAMS team in 2015 and took his maiden podium finish at the Spanish track during Sunday’s Sprint race, was over the moon with his day in the car.
“It was a wonderful day,” reflected Gasly. “This morning, getting into a Formula 1 car for the first time was something special.
“The feeling you get from the car is unbelievable. Everything is almost perfect, with elements like the power steering for example and of course there’s much more power than in the other formulas and you have more grip too. I really enjoyed the experience and I made the most of it, doing a lot of laps.
“All drivers dream of driving a Formula 1 car and having now done it, I am even more determined to reach my goal of racing in this category.
“It was awesome and I can’t wait to try it again. Thank you Red Bull and thank you Toro Rosso.”
Gasly, who has recent experience of both GP2 and the Formula Renault 3.5 Series, spoke of the differences between making the jump up to F1 from the respective series’.
“The GP2 car is probably a bit closer to F1 because in GP2 you use the same tyres, so it is more or less the same driving,” said Gasly. “I would say GP2 is a bit closer, but from 3.5 you can still make the jump, you have a lot of downforce which is similar to F1.
“You can adapt yourself quite quickly when jumping in an F1 car, as Kevin Magnussen did by finishing second on his first race weekend, so it is possible to do it from 3.5 and GP2.”
Gasly will now switch to the Infiniti Red Bull Racing team for day two of the test on Wednesday, while Carlos Sainz Jr returns to his seat at Toro Rosso.