Pierre Gasly has openly stated his willingness to return to the Red Bull seat he was demoted from halfway through the 2019 season.
Gasly was chosen as the driver to replace the Renault-bound Daniel Ricciardo in 2019 but his stint in the seat alongside Max Verstappen on the other side of the garage lasted just 12 races, relegated back to the sister team of the then-called Toro Rosso with Alex Albon replacing him.
It would have been easy for Gasly to be negatively impacted by the mid-season drop but, in fact, he has turned himself into one of the strongest drivers on grid and has now achieved a finish in all three podium positions with Toro Rosso/AlphaTauri since his demotion.
P7 a la maison.🇫🇷🇫🇷🇫🇷Merci à tous pour le soutien incroyable ce weekend, c’etait vraiment genial. Course difficile mais on a tout donne jusqu’a la fin. A l’année prochaine Paul Ricard 👋🏼 pic.twitter.com/elWM3RoYQ9
— PIERRE GASLY 🇫🇷 (@PierreGASLY) June 20, 2021
But, despite all the achievements with AlphaTauri, it is clear that a part of Gasly is still looking to return for a second crack at Red Bull.
“I’m confident it will be possible,” Gasly told Sky Sports F1.
“But for that there must be a will. The will on my side is there, I want to be in a competitive car, I want to fight for podiums, for wins, for championships.
“I’m sure we’ll discuss over the next few weeks and few months how my future looks. If it’s with Red Bull, if it’s with AlphaTauri, or if it’s with someone else.”
Gasly had been linked with leaving the Red Bull family all together and moving to French team Alpine. However, that door is closed for now with Esteban Ocon recently signing a new three-year deal and Fernando Alonso still contracted to the team until the end of the 2022 campaign.
Gasly, though, would not reveal if he had received contact from any other teams on the grid.
“I’m not going to say that!” Gasly said.
“You can try asking, but obviously my situation at the moment is quite clearly with Red Bull and, ultimately, it will be their decision.
“I’m doing my best to show them I deserve to be in that seat. With three podiums in the last two years in a midfield car, I don’t think many drivers have achieved it.”
Whilst there may be reluctance on Red Bull’s side to give Gasly a second chance, he does feel like he is a different driver now compared to one who was first promoted to the seat.
“I’m a bit different now than I was at Red Bull,” he reflected. “I’m more experienced, I think I have clearer ideas of what I need from the team, from the car and also from myself.
“Then on the other side, the team is also giving me everything I need and ask for to be competitive.
“With Red Bull, at the end of the day it was very short – we didn’t have much time to make it work. There were clear problems and I didn’t really have the time to solve all the issues we have.
“I’m sure it will be possible to make it work with them, but at the moment it’s not a question [if I drive with them again].
“We’ll see what happens in the future because I’ve scored three podiums for this team, no-one has ever done it before.
“Personally, I want to fight for podiums on a more consistent basis.”