Despite an excellent Formula 1 weekend that ended with a fifth place finish at the Azerbaijan Grand Prix, Pierre Gasly made a point of expressing his dissatisfaction after the race. The Alpha Tauri driver expressed his annoyance with the vibrations found in F1 for 2022 and decides to rant.
Having struggled since the start of the season, the Alpha Tauri driver had a very solid weekend at the Azerbaijan Grand Prix, finishing fifth, his best finish this year. However, this first top five finish of the season was not easy to come by for the Frenchman, who had to deal with a major problem that has persisted since the winter tests: porpoising.
Due to the new regulations in Formula 1, the cars are bouncing around and the floor is regularly banging on the track, causing the drivers to experience a lot of jolts and vibrations when they accelerate in a straight line. While the paddock had hoped to fix this early on in the season, it continues to affect the drivers’ driving and, after eight races so far this season, they are beginning to feel the effects on their health. A situation that Gasly does not like, and he did not hesitate to express all his problems after yesterday’s race.
“I need to find someone to give me a massage because, clearly, I’m very tense, and in pain” explained the
“Throughout the weekend, every morning, I’ve never been so tense in my neck and upper body. Since my first race in F1, it has never been as rough as on this track [this year]. It’s obviously related to the set-up, we knew when we came here that we were going to be very aggressive. But it’s been very intense.”
The 2020 Italian Grand Prix winner added: “It’s not healthy, that’s for sure. I had a physio session before and after every session, just because my [spinal] discs are suffering. You literally have no suspension, it hits the spine directly. Obviously the team tells me they can compromise with the settings but I’m compromising my health for the performance. I will always do that, because I am a driver and I always want to have the fastest car possible.”
The 26-year-old appealed to the FIA for help in ending the constant bouncing:
“I don’t think the FIA should put us in a position where we have to choose between health and performance. At the moment it’s quite tricky, and it’s clearly not tenable.
“This is what we talked about at the drivers’ briefing, we alerted the FIA to this problem and tried to ask them to find solutions so that we don’t end up with a cane at 30. The mirrors are shaking a lot because the vibrations are propagating on the car, it’s like shock waves.
“Visibility gets really bad and sometimes the car moves by itself just because the steering wheel is shaking. At these speeds it’s not easy but I hope they can… I don’t think they can fix it before the end of the season, but I hope they can for next year.”