Pierre Gasly had an extremely good, if not lonely, race at the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez on Sunday, with the Frenchman claiming an excellent fourth place.
The Scuderia AlphaTauri Honda driver made a good start from fifth on the grid and was able to gain a place thanks to Valtteri Bottas’ spin, and from there on in he was in a race of his own. He was unable to match the pace of the trio ahead of him, but he had more than enough pace to keep the charging Scuderia Ferrari drivers well behind him.
Gasly was pleased with the result as it moves AlphaTauri level on points in the Constructors’ Championship with the Alpine F1 Team, and he hopes they can overhaul their rivals before the end of the season.
“I’m extremely happy, P4 is such a great result and we couldn’t ask for a better weekend,” said Gasly. “Everything was under control with Charles [Leclerc] behind, I was able to pull away nicely and manage the entire race well from fourth position.
“This weekend the car has really been there, we delivered yesterday in Quali and then again in the race today and finishing ahead of Ferrari always feels good as well.
“We’re equal on points with Alpine now, it’s my personal plan to deliver fifth in the Championship to Franz and the whole team – a nice and well deserved Christmas gift – so we’ll keep pushing for that. The way we’re currently working as a team I think we’ll be able to find our chances in the next few races.”
“It’s so disappointing not to be finishing the race” – Yuki Tsunoda
Team-mate Yuki Tsunoda’s race was over by the second turn, with the Japanese racer finding himself eliminated after contact with Alpine’s Esteban Ocon.
Tsunoda, who had helped Gasly to get fourth on the grid during Saturday’s Qualifying session even though he was always going to start the race at the back of the grid following an engine change and grid penalty, felt it was a shame for his afternoon to be over so quickly as the car had felt good all weekend long in Mexico City.
“It’s such a shame, the car has been good here and, even if it wasn’t going to be easy, I think there could still have been an opportunity to score points today,” said Tsunoda. “It’s just unfortunate, the car next to me got sandwiched and then I was hit, these things happen in racing though.
“Overall, this race week has been really good, as the performance of the car has been strong, so it’s so disappointing not to be finishing the race.”