After a series of impressive performances, Alpine faced a lackluster weekend in Austria, with their standout moments being Esteban Ocon’s seventh-place finish in the rain-affected sprint race and Pierre Gasly’s tenth place in the grand prix, which was later downgraded due to a post-race penalty.
In contrast to their competitors like Ferrari and McLaren, Alpine opted not to introduce any updates at the Red Bull Ring. However, they are pinning their hopes on a new front wing debuting at Silverstone this weekend, followed by a revised floor scheduled for two races later at Spa, to bridge the gap once again.
Ocon expressed his anticipation, saying, “We recognize that many teams have made progress in the past two races, and we certainly need to do the same. I’m eager to see what we can achieve. While our main focus is on the teams ahead of us, we can see that the teams behind us are also pushing forward.”
Gasly, when asked about the upcoming wing by F1 Flow.com, added, “The new wing will undoubtedly provide a performance boost, and hopefully, Silverstone will be a track that suits us better, as Austria has its unique challenges. So, I’m looking forward to the next weekend and what we can extract from it.”
The sprint format, utilized for the second time this year at the Red Bull Ring, limited teams to a single practice session for preparing their cars ahead of qualifying on Friday. This constraint restricted the opportunity to test new components.
Dismissing the notion that the delay in introducing the upgrades was due to scheduling concerns, Ocon clarified, “I don’t believe it was done to have a stable weekend because there was only one practice session. Nowadays, you fit the updates and forget about them. Of course, there’s always room for optimizing their performance, but overall, it’s always a step forward. The upgrades we will introduce at Silverstone will undoubtedly be a step forward, and we have more developments planned before the shutdown.”
Following McLaren’s impressive showing in Austria, highlighted by Lando Norris’ fourth-place finish with a suite of upgrades, Alpine’s grip on fifth place in the constructors’ standings weakened, with their lead shrinking to 18 points.
Gasly admitted, “Ultimately, we strive to compete for better positions. I was chasing Fernando Alonso at the start of the race, but I consistently lost those two or three tenths. That’s what we lack at the moment to truly challenge Mercedes and Alonso ahead of us.”
He added, “Since the beginning of the year, I would say those two or three tenths compared to Mercedes and Aston Martin are what we’ve been missing. McLaren has taken a significant step forward. Is it just us? I’m not entirely sure, but we will assess the situation, and we need to find that extra edge we’re currently lacking.”
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about upgrades
What were the highlights of Alpine’s performance in Austria?
Alpine’s highlights in Austria were Esteban Ocon finishing seventh in the rain-affected sprint race and Pierre Gasly securing tenth place in the grand prix, which was later adjusted due to a post-race penalty.
Did Alpine bring any updates to the Red Bull Ring?
No, Alpine did not bring any updates to the Red Bull Ring in Austria. However, they have plans to introduce a new front wing at Silverstone and a revised floor at Spa in the upcoming races.
What are the expectations regarding the upcoming upgrades?
The team hopes that the new front wing at Silverstone and the revised floor at Spa will help them close the performance gap. Both Esteban Ocon and Pierre Gasly expressed their anticipation for the upgrades to bring improvements to their performance.
Why didn’t Alpine introduce updates during the Red Bull Ring weekend?
The decision not to introduce updates during the Red Bull Ring weekend was not due to scheduling concerns. According to Esteban Ocon, the updates are designed to be fitted and forgotten, and there is always room for optimizing their performance. Alpine believes the upcoming upgrades will still represent a step forward.
How has McLaren’s performance affected Alpine’s position in the constructors’ standings?
McLaren’s strong performance in Austria, including Lando Norris’ fourth-place finish with significant upgrades, caused Alpine to lose their grip on fifth place in the constructors’ standings. Their lead over McLaren decreased to 18 points.
What does Pierre Gasly believe is lacking in Alpine’s performance?
Gasly believes that Alpine is currently lacking two or three tenths of performance compared to Mercedes and Aston Martin. He acknowledges McLaren’s significant progress and suggests that Alpine needs to find those extra tenths to challenge the teams ahead of them.
More about upgrades
- Alpine F1 Team Official Website
- F1 Flow – Ocon interview
- F1 Flow – Gasly interview
- Formula1.com – Austrian Grand Prix Report
- Formula1.com – Sprint Race Highlights
- Formula1.com – Constructors’ Standings
- McLaren F1 Team Official Website
- Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One Team Official Website
- Aston Martin Cognizant Formula One™ Team Official Website