Pierre Gasly makes ‘no idea’ admission after joining Alpine from Red Bull

Pierre Gasly drove the A523 for this first time on Thursday as he looks to get to grips with his new team.

Pre-season testing is more important for some driver than others, with the likes of Pierre Gasly needing to use the three days to adapt to a completely new team, as well as a new car.

The Frenchman signed for Alpine to replace new Aston Martin signing Fernando Alonso, following a long and successful spell with AlphaTauri.

The team initially wanted to appoint Oscar Piastri but after a legal battle with the Australian, he was allowed to join their rivals McLaren instead.

Alpine boss Otmar Szafnauer has claimed that his team are actually better off with Gasly, having not even seen the 27-year-old as an attainable target due to his ties to Red Bull.

READ: Aston Martin suffer huge testing blow despite lightening pace

On Thursday’s testing sessions, Alpine were not particularly impressive with regards to lap times, with Gasly and his teammate Esteban Ocon only having two drivers slower than them come the end of the day.

This could be because of a number of reasons however, with the team likely running different tests to the other teams, resulting in slower lap times but equally important data.

Gasly have given positive reviews of his first outing in the A523, despite not being able to use it to its full potential.

“I’m pretty happy because it was very obvious to me sort of what car balance I want and how I want to improve the car and I which direction and what where this trend as well. So that’s always good,” he said.

Article continues below

READ: Haas show off VF-23 at Bahrain pre-season testing

“The car reacts well to what we changed. [But] to have an idea on where we stand comparted to last year, more performance, how much ect, at the moment I’ve no idea.”

Alpine have steadily improving during their two seasons in Formula 1, going from a fifth place finish in 2021 to a best of the rest finish last year, leapfrogging McLaren in the process.

With Gasly and Ocon both having tasted success already in their F1 careers, both team and driver will be hoping to start to battle with the big teams this season, becoming sporadic podium finishers in the process.