Pierre Gasly, Red Bull, Shanghai International Circuit, 2019

Gasly’s “aggressive” driving style costing him time to Verstappen

2019 F1 season

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Pierre Gasly says he can see the driving style differences which are causing the wide gap in performance between him and Red Bull team mate Max Verstappen.

Verstappen was eight-tenths of a second quicker than Gasly in qualifying for the Chinese Grand Prix. Gasly says it is clear from the team’s data where he is losing the time in each corner.

“It’s not so much turn-in,” he said. “Most of the time it’s mainly exits, just putting the power down. I’m sliding too much, basically. I think it’s being a bit too aggressive with the car, asking a bit too much to the rear axle so stressing the rear.

“At this moment we know that’s one thing we’re trying to improve: the rear potential on the exit. [I’m] a bit too aggressive so there are things we try to improve to go around it and try to make it a bit better through these areas.”

China was the first time this year Gasly joined Verstappen in Q3. He said there were “clearly some positives, some gains” last weekend despite finishing well behind his team mate but more changes are needed from himself and the car.

“I think there are still areas where we can make it a bit more suitable to me, and also on my side to basically adapt my driving to the car to extract more performance.”

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Dieter Rencken
Dieter Rencken has held full FIA Formula 1 media accreditation since 2000, during which period he has reported from over 300 grands prix, plus...
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23 comments on “Gasly’s “aggressive” driving style costing him time to Verstappen”

  1. Gasly is driving his F1 car like I’m driving a go-kart.
    I think I’m super fast and aggressive through the corners but miss a second at the finish ;)

    1. @coldfly Same here, LOL.

  2. Questions certainly have to be asked of the Red Bull management if Gasly turns out to be a flop. They had the choice of potentially promoting Sainz to Red Bull, but instead chose to promote a driver who only had a year in F1 prior, and never showed the sort of consistency that would convince you that he was ready for the big-time. Perhaps it is time to have a rethink on the whole “academy-only” philosophy, and look for a driver outside of the Red Bull family. If I were Horner or Marko, I’d certainly look at maybe trying to poach Hulkenberg from Renault, especially if he beats Ricciardo over the season.

    1. Nothing wrong with reb bull academy. They had the disadvantage of to many talents at the same time. As a result they had an aggressive selection costing some good drivers their place.
      Gasly is probably better then sainz. For now Norris kicks ass.

      1. Gasly is probably NOT bettet than Sainz. There is simply no indication what so ever that Gasly would even be on par with Sainz. Sainz was in torro rosso with Max and did quite well. Gasly has no prior benchmark at all, and is miles behind max. So I’m wondering where you’re getting the idea from that Gasly would be better than Sainz.

        1. Sainz – Verstappen 2019 sounds like a recipe for disaster.

      2. It’s pretty clear that Gasly isn’t in his full potential, he was faster in a Toro Rosso last year than in a Red Bull this year. But there’s no proof that he’s better than Sainz. I expected to see him around 0.3s behind Verstapen, let’s wait and see. If there’s a real problem in his driving or car setup the team knows it and will give him time.

    2. I think they didn’t want Sainz because Sainz didn’t want to be at RB. He said countless times that he liked Renault better as a team than TR.

      Gasly doesn’t seem te be a great (F1) driver but he go’s against a driver that is still getting better and is already years at RB. He got promoted to soon for sure and perhaps should had gotten Vandoorne or any other more experienced driver. But I ginda like that they stick to the academy idea.

      1. @stefan His chances of getting to the energy drinks company’s main team already got reduced when he joined Renault on loan at the tail-end of 2017.

  3. At first glance I laughed at the headline and thought “Aggressive is just what he isn’t!”

    But of course that is wrong. Like @coldfly says, we can think we are driving to the limit but the truth is that we are losing time by being over aggressive.
    A smooth entry and exit from a tight corner is better than just crazy breaking into it and then stamping on the go pedal again.
    I hope he really is working on this and that he masters it as I want to see both Red Bulls up where they belong, worrying the leaders.

  4. IMO he’s really in danger of being replaced mid-season if this isn’t sorted.

    0.8s to team mate is really inexcusable at the top level.

    1. @balue Yes, but would Kvyat or Albon really be any better at getting the best out of the car in its current state? That would be the key point.

      1. @jerejj True, but Kvyat can’t be worse than this. The time also might come for Red Bull to realize points are too dear to always use their juniors if they aren’t up to it. They could probably get Alonso for free who they would need if they are serious about challenging Ferrari.

        1. If they get Alonso, he’ll say, “Now, we can fight!” again.

      2. At least Kvyat managed a podium finish in a RedBull, so there’s that. Of course, there’s absolutely no indication that he progressed at all compared to his past level, and if so, there’s no point of getting him swapped with Gasly, who clearly is still searching for his form, which was clearly better lsat year in an inferrior car. It is likely RedBull will swap Gasly with Albon if Gasly’s form will not improve soon.

        1. Albon was way too slow compared to Kvyat on race pace so far, and much slower in qualy when Kvyat didnt make mistakes. Kvyat on the other hand seems to be again finding himself in all the wrong situations. They’ll keep Gasly.

  5. So, it’s reassuring to see for the first time some concrete statements on why he’s lagging. One can only wish – for not only Gasly’s sake – that he’s now being coached appropriately to correct this and harness the car’s potential.

  6. Hamilton said the same about driving in China. Hamilton had to change his driving style to suit the car.

  7. MB (@muralibhats)
    21st April 2019, 18:40

    Wait. I thought VER is pretty aggressive. Gasley is more aggressive than him? Ha ha.

    I think Gasley was more aggressive with his tongue all through last year which landed him in RB by praising honda and also looking down on poor Hartley.

    1. Actually Max is a very smooth driver. Closer to Button than many on the grid.

      Just don’t let him near other cars.

      I can totally see Gasly struggling on traction compared to Max. The latter has great control of the rear, and it is what enables him to stick with his rivals during dogfights.

  8. And i thought his Honda experience would help Gasly is the Honda Torque so great?

  9. Albon shining and Gasly not getting settled in. Very interesting.

  10. Max is very easy on the tyres because he is so precise and “smooth”. On top of that he has a unique car control in fights. Sure he gets it wrong occasionally. But he tries harder too. So he gets into more fights than others would, therefore opening the chance for an overtake or contact if he or the other guy get it ever so slightly wrong. Anyone who is not as efficient wouldn’t even get close enough with the car they have. Look at Ricciardo.. a great driver but thoroughly beaten in race pace last year. Why? Because Max is both more delicate with his tyres for most of the GP and also more on the limit of an attack is possible. Simply put.. he gets more out of the potential of the car than anyone else.

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