Whilst happy with making it through into the top ten in Qualifying for the Bahrain Grand Prix, Pierre Gasly admitted he was not happy with his performance in Q3 that left him eighth on the grid.
The Scuderia AlphaTauri Honda driver felt he could have been at least three or four places higher on the grid, with less than two-tenths of a second away from fourth placed Alexander Albon.
Gasly will start the race at the Bahrain International Circuit on the favoured medium compound of Pirelli tyre, having switched from the soft after the red flag during Q2, and he knows there will be many different strategy options come race day with tyre degradation so high at this track.
“It’s really positive to get both cars into Q3 today, but as for myself, even if I’m happy for the team, deep inside I’m still a bit disappointed with P8,” said Gasly. “I don’t really know how to feel about it because we looked really strong all weekend, so I wanted a bit more.
“It was so tight, only a tenth to P5 and I would have liked to be on that third row tomorrow, but that’s how it is and I think it’s still a decent place to start the race. I expect pretty exciting battles on track tomorrow and I think we have the potential to fight for a good position.
“Strategy-wise, it will be pretty unusual and interesting, so I think we’ll see many different options between the teams. Tyre degradation will be the key factor, so I’m looking forward to it.”
“We had one shot with a different compound and we took it” – Daniil Kvyat
Team-mate Daniil Kvyat was able to follow Gasly into the top ten shootout, although an incorrect front wing angle adjustment left the Russian unable to better tenth on the grid.
It was only the second time in 2020 that Kvyat was able to advance into Q3, and he did so by also using the medium compound, something he was not expecting to do after starting Q2 on the soft compound.
“I’m quite happy with how Qualifying went as it was a good and competitive session,” said Kvyat. “Q2 was very solid, we had one shot with a different compound and we took it, there was quite a bit of pressure on us, but we managed.
“I wasn’t too happy with my Q3 lap, as I made a couple of mistakes and maybe we took a slightly wrong direction with the front wing. Nevertheless, it was a strong Qualifying and puts us in a good position to have a strong race tomorrow.
“The tyres suffer a lot around here, so it will be different from what we’ve experienced so far this year. Of course, there were some races where the tyres were tricky, but tomorrow will certainly be an interesting challenge.”