Pierre Gasly pumped in 130 laps on the simulator ready for the first Miami Grand Prix, saying the track makes a good early impression.
As part of Formula 1’s plan to increase its presence in the United States, the Miami Grand Prix was added to the calendar for 2022, with the first visit to the Miami International Autodrome setting the scene for Round 5 of the 2022 season.
Simulators become vital tools for new venues like these, the drivers looking to hit the ground running to the best of their abilities.
That very much has been a part of Gasly’s preparations, who feels the the Miami International Autodrome looks set to be a “fun” venue with a real mix of characteristics.
The Frenchman is looking to bounce back from a difficult outing last time out at Imola, where he ended up stuck in the ‘DRS train‘, finishing P12.
soaking up some Miami sun before getting down to business this weekend 🌴🇺🇸 pic.twitter.com/W5sY2urFOL
— Scuderia AlphaTauri (@AlphaTauriF1) May 3, 2022
“Although it will be important to qualify well in Miami, I think it should be possible to overtake there,” he said in a preview for the event from his AlphaTauri team.
“But there are some races like Imola coming up, in Spain and Monaco, where qualifying has far greater importance and having a good Saturday is the key.
“I’ve driven Miami on the simulator. I think I did around 130 laps and it looks as though it could be a really fun track to drive with high-speed corners and some sections that are very slow and technical with long straights, so I reckon it could be a great race.
“I like the fun side of racing in the States, as the organisers always try and do something special in terms of entertainment to keep the crowd happy. I spend quite a bit of time in the States, and I try and take in some of their popular sports, such as the NBA, the NFL and hockey. Every time I go, I am amazed at how they create a special energy, a special atmosphere which is incredible.
“I think they are planning something along those lines for Miami to make it a stand-out event. My main hope is that we can continue to score points in every race and from my point of view, get back into the good rhythm we had in the first three races and forget about the Imola weekend.”
Gasly’s team-mate Yuki Tsunoda enjoyed a standout race weekend at Imola, finishing P7 on a Sunday where he was clearly the stronger performer.
But now heading to a totally new venue, which will see the return to the regular race weekend format, Tsunoda says the three free practice sessions at Miami will be vital.
“Miami is a new circuit, but we will get three full free practice sessions to learn it,” he said.
“I have driven the track on the simulator and the first two sectors are quite fast with some medium and high-speed corner. Sector 3 is what I call a “Formula E sector” with a lot of very tight corners and I think overall it looks like being quite an interesting track to drive.
“I think it will be fun, although overtaking might be difficult, so we must qualify well. If we can have a long run pace similar or better than at Imola, that would be perfect.
“The free practice sessions will be very important for everyone as the track is brand new, so data gathering will be the most important thing on Friday.”