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Wednesday, May 22, 2024

Alpine “would not know true tempo” after troubled Bahrain F1 weekend

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Alpine’s kind was one of many major query marks after pre-season testing, through which it did not set quick occasions on Pirelli’s softest compounds.

However the race weekend revealed solely a glimpse about Alpine’s true place within the pecking order as each Esteban Ocon and Pierre Gasly bumped into points.

Ocon certified ninth however then confronted three time penalties within the race earlier than he retired.

Gasly began final after making a mistake in Q1 on an aggressive set-up, however then he excelled within the race by shifting up the order to ninth.

Ocon’s qualifying tempo and Gasly’s race-day comeback each highlighted Alpine’s potential, however staff principal Szafnauer continues to be at the hours of darkness on what it could actually obtain when it executes a clear weekend.

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“We nonetheless do not know its true tempo due to a number of the operational issues that occurred within the race,” Szafnauer stated.

“Esteban had all of his points that we talked about, Pierre was caught in nineteenth for fairly a while at the start.

“I am taking a look at lap occasions and when you ever watch a race between the blokes up entrance and the blokes on the again, [in the same car] you could be two seconds a lap totally different simply due to the place you are racing.

“So, I nonetheless do not know the place we’re relative simply because we’re out of place with one automobile and the opposite automobile had the issues we talked about. I do not suppose we’re far off.”

Pierre Gasly, Alpine A523, Logan Sargeant, Williams FW45

Picture by: Mark Sutton / Motorsport Images

Gasly’s robust ultimate stint on the comfortable tyres, through which he virtually caught Alfa Romeo’s Valtteri Bottas forward of him, has urged that Alpine was the fifth-quickest automobile in Bahrain.

Having been leapfrogged by Aston Martin in comparison with final yr, Szafnauer says its major purpose is to “outdevelop” them because it nonetheless goals to hold on to fourth.

However even within the brief time period he is assured the Enstone staff will rating “loads of factors” simply by executing clear weekends.

“I feel we have been about 16 seconds behind Bottas at that time, and we caught him however could not overtake ultimately. So I feel that stint labored properly,” Szafnauer stated.

“Taking a look at it from an optimistic standpoint and say if Pierre had began ninth, we might have crushed Bottas for positive.

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“How shut would we have now been to the Mercedes and I feel [Lance] Stroll? They have been 16 seconds forward of us, we want to take a look.

“Now we simply have to outdevelop them so we are able to shut a niche to these guys we need to beat.

“Esteban being out of place firstly, he’ll be taught from that. Operationally, we are able to sit up for having easy, trouble-free races.

“And if that occurs, Pierre qualifies the place he can qualify and we have got each of them within the prime 10 positions, then I feel we’ll rating loads of factors after which we’ll combat for fourth.”

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