In just a few day’s time, the second race of the season will kick off in Italy, at the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix.
After an action-packed season opener, fans are on the edge of their seats waiting to see what happens next among the new and improved 2021 contenders.
Ahead of the action, AlphaTauri’s Pierre Gasly says there are “a lot of positives to take from” the Bahrain Grand Prix after a P17 finish.
A collision with McLaren’s Daniel Ricciardo ensured he had a broken front wing, and eventually a DNF.
Gasly, alongside newcomer, Yuki Tsunoda remained in front of the pack throughout all three free practice sessions with a top-five Qualifying position for Gasly – marking one of their best ever results.
“Overall, in terms of performance and speed, it is very encouraging for the rest of the season, starting with Imola this weekend,” Gasly said.
“From what we saw in Bahrain, it seems we have a package that will allow us to fight for the big points and there is no reason for that not to be the case for the coming races.”
“One example of the team’s confidence was the decision to tackle Q2 at Sakhir on the Medium tyre as apart from us, there was only the two Mercedes and Max Verstappen who did it.
“It was a risk, but it proves our belief in our car and our performance level. Now I hope we will be able to do that again at other circuits.”
Now looking ahead to Imola and the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix, the French driver is looking to improve on his results in 2020, after his race came to an abrupt end.
After just eight laps of the race, Gasly received an urgent radio message about a terminal situation, and he was told “there is no option, if we don’t retire now, we will blow everything up.”
Speaking before of the action this weekend, Pierre says this “is one of my favourite circuits. I love it. It is technical with a lot of fast corners which allows you to get into a rhythm and you are always busy as it is quite twisty.
“Last year at this track I got my best ever Qualifying with the team, on the second row. Unfortunately, that race ended early with a problem while I was lying fifth, but it was a very good weekend up until then, so now I’m keen to get back there and make up for last year’s disappointment.
“The team has worked hard since the first race, as there are still areas where we can improve, even if we are clearly on the pace at the moment.
“But this early in the season, we can expect everyone to make progress as they get to understand their cars better and how to optimise them.
“So, we have to work hard to keep moving forward. Honestly, I can’t wait to go racing again as this three-week break has seemed quite long.
“From now on, the races come one after the other and I’m keen to see what results we can get.”