Pierre Gasly debunks ‘overweight’ Alpine rumours after poor Bahrain showing

Michelle Foster
Alpine drivers pull into the pits with Pierre Gasly ahead of Esteban Ocon

Pierre Gasly has downplayed suggestions Alpine's A524 is 10kg overweight.

Pierre Gasly has refuted suggestions Alpine’s A524 is as much as 10 to 11 kilograms overweight, but he accepts even 2kgs is worth “six-hundredths” of a second.

Well aware ahead of the season-opening Bahrain Grand Prix weekend that they were in for a difficult start to the campaign, Alpine probably didn’t realise how wretched it would be. Gasly and Esteban Ocon dropped out of qualifying in formation, the latter P19 ahead of his team-mate’s P20.

Pierre Gasly admits the Alpine A524 is overweight

Additional reporting Thomas Maher

While Ocon was 0.148s shy of a Q2 berth, Gasly was a further 0.155s off the pace.

It was suggested to the Grand Prix winner that part of Alpine’s problem with their A524 is that the car is “10-11 kilograms” over the minimum weight of 798kg.

Gasly denied this, although he did concede that even 2kgs overweight would cost the team “six-hundredths” of a second. And it all adds up.

“It’s not as bad as you mentioned,” he told the media, including PlanetF1.com after his early qualifying exit.

“So there is obviously lap time to find, a bit everywhere. And you know, looking at the gaps there is some work to do.

“When looking at the gaps everything matters and two kilos equals six-hundredths and six-hundredths will make a difference.

“There is some weight to be [lost], there is some performance to come on the chassis, there will be upgrades.

“It’s not the position we want to be in but we’re all in the same boat and we’ll try to get the best out of it every single time.”

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Asked if he knew when those upgrades would be put on the car, he replied: “Yes, but then I don’t want to go too much into details about that.”

He added: “We have to be patient because it’s only the first qualifying and we know that the car is not providing the potential that we believe is there.

“For now, you know, it’s time will tell whether it was the right approach.

“I trust the guys, I know what they’re finding. We know we’ve got time to find in many different areas, not only in a specific department, so we will have to be patient and be objective after a couple of races.”

According to reports, Alpine’s weight issue stems from the car failing the lateral load test of the monocoque with the team having incorporated weight-saving measures that weren’t up to the test.

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