Daniil Kvyat admitted he was initially angry with Romain Grosjean after their first lap clash during Sunday’s Bahrain Grand Prix, but that anger soon dissipated and turned into worry after the Frenchman’s car was engulfed in flames and ended up lodged inside the barriers.
The Scuderia AlphaTauri Honda driver can not be faulted in anyway for his part in the clash that thankfully saw Grosjean escape serious injury, with the Haas F1 Team driver cutting across the front of the Russian’s car on the exit of turn three.
Kvyat admitted he was hoping Grosjean was okay in the incident, and it was fortunate that he escaped with only minor burns to his hands.
“To finish P11 is super frustrating,” said Kvyat. “On the opening lap, I was a bit angry at first with Romain for his move, but then I was just worried about him because I saw the flames and how bad the crash was – I was just hoping he was OK and fortunately it wasn’t as bad as it looked.”
Kvyat was also involved in a clash with Lance Stroll after the resumption of the race, with the BWT Racing Point Formula One Team driver ending upside down after being clipped by the Russian.
The stewards at the Bahrain International Circuit believed Kvyat to be at fault, and he felt the ten second penalty that ruined his race was undeserved as he believed he was far enough alongside Stroll for him to give space to him.
“Then on the race restart I had an incident with Stroll,” added the Russian. “I was fully on the inside of him and even if I think saw me he chose to turn in like I wasn’t there. I put my whole car on the inside of the kerb and there wasn’t much more I could have done.
“So, I don’t share the same view as the Stewards regarding my penalty. It’s a shame they took this decision because it ruined my race. I’m upset but nothing will change the outcome, unfortunately.”
“We took a risky strategy – it was a gamble” – Pierre Gasly
Team-mate Pierre Gasly was pleased to see Grosjean escape serious injury in the crash, and he hopes his countryman makes a speedy recovery and a return to the paddock sooner rather than later.
“The main thing about today is to see Romain walking away from that horrific crash at the start of the race,” said Gasly. “It was pretty shocking to see, but I’m really glad he’s ok and I wish him all the best for his recovery and hope to see him back very soon.”
Gasly gambled on making only one pit stop throughout the race, and although he lost positions to the two McLaren F1 Team drivers in the closing laps as his tyres faded, he was able to hold on for sixth at the chequered flag.
“Performance-wise, I’m really pleased with our job,” said Gasly. “We took a risky strategy – it was a gamble – but it paid off in the end.
“It was one of the toughest races and a lot of hard work inside the cockpit today, it was all about managing and pushing as hard as I could, without hurting the tyres too much and keep them alive for as many laps as possible.
“It gave me a pretty hard time in the cockpit, but we managed to get one of our best results of the year, so I’m really happy to make it back in the points and make the best out of this Sunday.”