Pierre Gasly says it is "embarrassing" to be on the verge of a Formula 1 race ban for racking up too many penalty points. F1 drivers are allowed to accumulate 12 points on their superlicence in a 12-month period before an automatic one-race ban is triggered, with Gasly currently sitting on 10. Points are wiped from the record after one year, but the French driver is not set to lose any until May 2023, with that being nine races away. Faced with the prospect of being the first driver to be banned under the system, the AlphaTauri driver admits it is "embarrassing."
Gasly on race ban
"I am not going to lie, it is a very unpleasant situation and quite delicate," Gasly told media, including RacingNews365.com ahead of the Brazilian GP. "In some ways, it is also quite embarrassing to be in a situation where I could be banned for a race after the season I have done, and I don't really feel I've been particularly dangerous over these past 12 months. "It would definitely be a harsh penalty, and there has been a lot of discussion with the FIA to try and find a solution [going forward]. "I want to finish the season in the best way with AlphaTauri, and I want to do all the races in 2023 and get the maximum chances to perform for Alpine. "There is a lot at stake because no-one knows what is going to happen in 2023. "I could end up with an amazing car, fighting for the championship for example and I can't take the risk to be banned for a race and lose all my hopes for the championship. "It is a very tricky situation."
Gasly confirms discussions with FIA
Gasly's 10 points have been through a variety of reasons, namely causing collisions (four points), exceeding track limits (one), speeding under red flag conditions (two), forcing another driver off the track (one), and falling too far behind the Safety Car (two). The Alpine-bound driver is keen to discuss with the FIA the way penalty points are handed out. "I've been discussing quite a lot with the FIA to try and find solutions, because the way the regulations are written at the moment, it is quite strict on the drivers," he said. "There are quite harsh penalties, even though it is not always related to dangerous driving and definitely the penalties have a massive reflection on the team and the Drivers' Championship. "I hope we are going to have more conversations and can find a solution this weekend to avoid ending up in a silly situation where I'll be banned for a race and that will be terrible for myself. "It is not the way I saw [F1] growing up and don't think it is the correct approach. "Because I can't really go into next year only two points [off a ban] and that risk hanging over my head."