Pierre Gasly felt it was a bit of naughty work from Sergio Perez to squeeze him so much in F1 Belgian GP as he was sad passing Ferrari with so much ease.
AlphaTauri’s Gasly was the lone driver to start the F1 Belgian GP at Spa-Francorchamps on the hard compound as he made immediate impact, passing his rivals one by one to be up to eighth already, before the safety car ruined his strategy.
He was going to go further in the grand prix but the safety car helped others with a free stop as they were able to get him for track position. He dropped back after his stop and recovered to finish eighth, beating the Racing Point cars.
Post-race, he thought that fifth was possible as he was very close in the end to Esteban Ocon, Alexander Albon and Lando Norris. While acknowledging the Driver of the Day memento from the F1 fans, Gasly spoke about his run-in with Perez at the start.
Jostling for track position, the two had a hair-raising moment onto Eau Rouge, going wheel-to-wheel, as Gasly felt that Perez squeezed him a bit too much in the end, which did trigger the heartbeat of the Frenchman for a moment at that speed.
He had just cleared teammate Daniil Kvyat and Norris which was a hard move as well. The safety car cost us P5 and we knew the worst time for it would be Lap 8 to Lap 20,” started Gasly. “On the hard tyres, we expected to struggle a bit like the first three laps and it was the opposite.
“I felt great. I had quite a lot of pace compared to the other guys and then I straightaway went for some moves. But f**ing hell, it was naughty, it was really naughty from Perez. From the inside, I had no space left on my right and I could see him coming on the left. I was not going to give up, I was staying flat.
“Honestly, I thought we were in the wall. I’m not kidding, I was inside, I was like, I can’t move more than that. And at that point we’re probably going 280 or 300. Sergio really squeezed me, which gave me even more I was like I’m not gonna lift, I’m gonna make this work and it was tight. Sergio is a hard racer, I knew it but there for sure.
“My heartbeat went slightly high when he started to squeeze me but I was committed and I was like, there is no way I’m gonna lift, I’m gonna make this move work and it was a great one,” summed up Gasly. The pass on Sebastian Vettel, though, saddened him.
“I think they tried a lot of things this weekend with wings, a low one, high one, but I mean, it’s even painful,” said Gasly. “I mean, to see them that slow, especially when, when you see what they achieved last year. There’s clearly a massive deficit and they can’t really fight. I mean, I’m happy to finish ahead of them, that’s for sure.
“But they are having a tough time.” Summing up, Gasly acknowledged his late friend Anthoine Hubert, as he continues to have a solid 2020 F1 season. Teammate Kvyat rued his strategy to not start on the hard tyres, as he just missed on points to be 11th.
Here’s video of all his overtaking moves: https://www.formula1.com/en/video/2020/8/2020_Belgian_Grand_Prix__Pierre_Gasly%27s_overtaking_masterclass.html
Here’s why safety car was deployed
Here’s how the F1 Belgian GP panned out