Pierre Gasly is expecting a tight qualifying session at the upcoming Styrian Grand Prix.
The F1 calendar will hold the first of two back-to-back races at Austria's Red Bull Ring this weekend and, after the circuit hosted a back-to-back last year, Gasly believes that the gaps will again be close.
"We already saw last year that with two races on the same track, the gaps are very close, especially on what is a very short track, and you have to look to improve from one weekend to the next," Gasly said in the official AlphaTauri team preview.
"Staying there two weekends in a row means the cars are optimised and of course we drivers have found out how to be on the absolute limit. It means that in qualifying especially, it will be extremely tight."
With the track being a home circuit for the whole Red Bull stable, Gasly knows that expectations will be high for the team but is looking forward to soaking up the atmosphere.
"In Austria, I finished seventh and 15th at the Red Bull Ring in the two races there last year," the Frenchman explained. "The track is very short with quite a few straights and not many corners, so you need to optimise your car for those handful of corners.
"After my home race in France, now one week later it’s a home circuit for all of us as a Red Bull team. A lot will be expected of us there from Red Bull, from AlphaTauri and all the team’s partners.
"A full crowd of fans are being allowed in and I think that will be a good feeling having big crowds all the way around a racetrack. There should be a great energy and plenty of atmosphere, just like in the past. I can’t wait to race there, it’s going to be an exciting couple of weekends."
Gasly has had a strong season so far and currently sits in eighth place in the Drivers' Standings. The 25-year-old hopes to continue this momentum in Austria.
"They are obviously a pair of important Grands Prix for us and I hope we can continue to perform in a strong way, like we have been doing so far, scoring points in every race except the opening round of the season. We have to keep pushing like that."