2021 Formula 1 Russian Grand Prix. France’s Pierre Gasly, driving for Scuderia AlphaTauri Honda, finished in 13th place. His team-mate, Yuki Tsunoda from Japan, finished 17th.
It’s not been a great weekend for us really. We missed a big opportunity yesterday in Qualifying and again today we made the wrong decision with the slicks, which unfortunately means we finished out of the points. The pace was strong here and I think we had a good first stint, but we just didn’t utilise all the opportunities given to us this weekend, which is a real shame. We need to review everything from today and work out how we make the most out of these conditions in the future. It’s a weekend to forget, but we’ve got a good team and I’m confident we can bounce back at the next one.
It’s obviously a disappointing day. I’ve struggled with the balance of the car all weekend and it was the same today in the race, especially on the first lap where it was hard to keep it on the track. I just need to reset after this weekend and work on my baseline performance, so I can start finishing in the points again.
Claudio Balestri – Chief Engineer, Vehicle Performance
Today the target was to score points and we didn’t. In the first lap we immediately lost positions with both cars, but for the rest of the race, when we were free of traffic, the pace of the car was quite good. To maximise the possibility to score points we decided to split the strategy across the cars, with Pierre going long on the first stint with the Hards, then swapping to the Mediums – while with Yuki we did the opposite, starting him on the Mediums. However, with just six laps to go, some light rain arrived and the track became slippery.
Some cars pitted for Inters, but we decided to stick with dry tyres – leaving Pierre out and calling Yuki in for Softs – as we believed the rain wouldn’t continue and we could capitalise on this opportunity. Unfortunately, the gamble didn’t pay off and the rain became far heavier, so we were forced to pit for Inters. We now need to go home and analyse what we could have done better in such tricky weather conditions.