Pierre Gasly felt positive about the outcome of Qualifying for the Austrian Grand Prix despite the Frenchman missing out on a position inside the top ten, with the Red Bull Toro Rosso Honda driver set to start the race from twelfth on the grid.
The 2016 GP2 Series champion was happy that the STR13 appeared to be more competitive than it was seven days ago at the French Grand Prix, although he acknowledges there is still progress to be made with the car in order to be a genuine challenger for the top ten on the grid every weekend.
Gasly feels starting twelfth on the grid could be a good thing as it will allow a free choice of starting tyre that could benefit him when it comes to strategy, with the Frenchman looking to score points for a third time in 2018 so to close the gap to the top ten in the Drivers’ Championship.
“It was a good day, we looked more competitive than we did last week in Paul Ricard, which is positive,” said Gasly. “We still need to work a bit harder and find more performance to fight with the guys in Q3, but I’m happy with the lap I did and I think we maximised the package we had.
“The car felt good, I think in terms of chassis things are looking quite positive, but we know with the straight line speed we are still a bit behind Mercedes and Ferrari, so overall we made a good step but there’s still work to be done.
“However, P12 is not a bad place to start the race tomorrow because we will have the freedom to choose the tyres.”