Horner: Gasly has been exceptional at STR

Date published: November 16 2019

Pierre Gasly

Christian Horner believes Pierre Galsy’s current form is vindicates Red Bull’s decision to demoted him to Toro Rosso as he has been “exceptional” since his return.

After one season racing with Toro Rosso, Gasly was promoted to a Red Bull Racing seat for this year’s campaign.

The team stated from the get-go that they felt it was a year too soon for the Frenchman but he was next in line after Daniel Ricciardo’s shock exit to Renault.

Gasly, though, never settled at Red Bull.

Suffering two pre-season crashes, the pressure was on and he never recovered, unable to match team-mate Max Verstappen.

The final straw came in Hungary when he was P6 and lapped by his team-mate.

Red Bull dropped him back down to Toro Rosso ahead of the Belgian GP with Gasly scoring points in four of his seven races back with his old team.

“It was very tough for him coming into the start of the season off the back off two accidents in pre-season and that I think definitely affected his confidence,” Horner explained to Autosport.

“And of course being the team-mate to Max Verstappen is a very tough job to have, having that reference point.

“For Pierre, it was a difficult first half of the season.

“We felt that with the pressure building on him, the public pressure, the media scrutiny, it was right to remove him from that and put him into the slightly less pressured environment of Toro Rosso.

“Since that switch I think he has driven exceptionally well.

“You can see his confidence is growing. He’s driven some very strong races and his pace is getting better and better.

“He looks happier in that environment, which is good to see.”

Such has been Gasly’s return to form that Red Bull have confirmed him as a Toro Rosso driver for the 2020 season.

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