Lack of Safety Car Denies Giovinazzi Shot at First F1 Top Ten Finish

by Paul Hensby
Antonio Giovinazzi - Alfa Romeo Racing - Baku City Circuit

Antonio Giovinazzi’s wait for a first top ten finish in Formula 1 goes on despite his strongest weekend to date for the Alfa Romeo Racing driver.

The Italian had made it through to the top ten shootout for the first time in his career and had set the eighth fastest time overall in Qualifying for the Azerbaijan Grand Prix, but Giovinazzi was forced to start at the back of the grid thanks to a ten-place grid penalty, handed to him for using a third control electronics unit, one more than his allowed quota for the season.

He was able to climb to twelfth but felt he was stuck in traffic for too long to be a genuine contender for points, although he did see team-mate Kimi Räikkönen start from the pit lane and come through the pack to score a point for tenth place.

Giovinazzi hopes now to break his points duck in the next race on the calendar, the Spanish Grand Prix in two weeks time, knowing he had the pace to score points at the Baku City Circuit had he been in a position to fight for them.

“It was a challenging race,” said Giovinazzi.  “We started from P17 on the grid due to my 10-place penalty. I lost too much time to stay out in the first stint and got stuck in traffic.

“It’s a shame because I had a good pace but unfortunately there was no safety car and I couldn’t challenge for a place in Top Ten.

“Now I have to stay focused and keep working for the next race in Barcelona.”

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