Gasly ‘super happy’ to finally break 100-point barrier

Date published: December 7 2021 - Jamie Woodhouse

Pierre Gasly, AlphaTauri, deploys DRS. Saudi Arabia, December 2021.

Pierre Gasly was rightly delighted as he reached 100 points in a season for the first time with P6 at the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix.

Until now Gasly’s best points haul for a full season was 95, achieved in 2019 across his stints with Red Bull and Toro Rosso, but now the Frenchman has officially joined the 100 club, with one round still remaining to stretch his tally further.

Finishing the race from where he started, Gasly was not only delighted to notch up his 100th point of the season, but also he was thrilled to see both Ferraris finish behind with Charles Leclerc P7 and Carlos Sainz P8.

“Super happy, another top six for us and we finished in front of both Ferraris, so pretty incredible,” he told reporters after the race.

“Also means we achieved 100 points in a season on my side, which was the high target of the year, really happy with that and also for the team.”

Last time out in Qatar Gasly called AlphaTauri’s pace “shocking”, so was thankful to see an improvement in the corners at least at the Jeddah Corniche Circuit.

But their rivals Alpine have likely now guaranteed P5 in the Constructors’ after Esteban Ocon crossed the line P4 in Jeddah, stretching his team’s advantage over AlphaTauri to 29 points.

And so, Gasly says his team must find out where Alpine have found their late-season performance from.

“It was hard, we need to analyse it a bit more because we were quite a lot slower in the straights compared to our main rivals,” said Gasly of his team’s Saudi Arabian GP pace.

“I think in the corners we were actually quite competitive, so different to Qatar, but ultimately we were fast, we managed to catch Daniel [Ricciardo] in the end.

“But we didn’t have the pace of the Alpine, I think they seem to have found something towards the end of the year.

“We will review, but objectively it’s a P6, we have to be really pleased with that.”

For Gasly’s team-mate Yuki Tsunoda his race had moments of promise, including a sensational overtake on Leclerc, but his evening was ruined when he collided with Sebastian Vettel, destroying his front wing in the process.

Tsunoda would receive a five-second time penalty and two points for his superlicence, apologising to Vettel post-race as he took accountability for the crash.

Ultimately Tsunoda finished the race P14.

 

“The last start went well, but the first two lost a lot of positions,” Tsunoda reflected.

“A mistake on the overtake, I should have waited a bit more, and I had a collision with Vettel, that was completely my fault, so apologies to Sebastian.”