Pierre Gasly has said he is “better than the Pierre of three years ago” following his demotion from Red Bull.
The Frenchman made the step-up to the main team for the 2019 campaign following two seasons at Toro Rosso but lasted just 12 races before returning to the junior team.
At the time, the demotion knocked his confidence but since then he has gone on to establish himself as the senior member of AlphaTauri and one of the more talented drivers on the grid. There was even speculation he may be ready for a move to another team such as McLaren but he committed his future to his current side for 2023.
“Oh, big time,” he replied. “You always learn way more from failures and challenges than any other things or even from success because you always need to question what went wrong, what could have been better? How could you have done things better? How could you have managed things better?
“There were things in my control [at Red Bull] and there were other things out of my control. And, you know, being the way that I am, I’m also a control freak, I need to understand, I need transparency, I need to be aware of what’s happening.”
The 26-year-old went on to say that all drivers are different and that he did not get what he needed during his time at Red Bull.
“We know all drivers are all different and we need certain environments and working conditions to be at your best,” he said.
“I don’t want to come back into detail into what’s happened, because I’ve always said it, certain things have to be completely confidential. We’ve talked so much with Helmut [Marko] and Christian [Horner] and Red Bull and I think we, we all know, quite clearly what’s happened.
“[Whether] we accept or not this, this is another question but I think it’s quite clear and we’re both fine with it.
“[Do I think] I’ve been way better? Yeah, for sure. But now, there is no real point to talk about it. Honestly, to me, it was such a long time ago. Since then, I’ve won in Monza, finished Brazil on the podium with Toro Rosso, last year the podium with AlphaTauri. So, I do feel there is a lot of positive that came out from that situation.
Gasly said the demotion also gave him a newfound sense of drive and that has helped him achieve the success in his career.
“It gave me the motivation. The work that I’ve put in since that time, I’ve been incredible. I’m also really happy with what I’ve managed to achieve after that, because a lot of people thought I was done.
“That’s not the way that it works with me. I’ve been always fighting for everything that I wanted in my life and when you try to put obstacles in front of me, I’m not the kind of one to go back and just stand there and accept things as they are.
“I’m someone that fights for everything that I want. I’m objective, no one is perfect. You always need to look at yourself in the mirror and with an objective view and understanding how you can make yourself better and that’s what I do every single day. That’s my motivation.
“The Pierre that I am today is better than the Pierre of three years ago but it’s worse than the Pierre I will be in three years.
“I know my time will come and I’ll get my opportunity and once I get that opportunity, I know 100% that I will make it work. So that’s all that matters, I keep grinding, I keep working, and I’m just excited for that time to come.”