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Gasly reflects on US GP penalty: I wasn't trying to do anything clever

Pierre Gasly collected a penalty for a second race weekend in a row at the United States Grand Prix, with the punishment in Austin relating to a Safety Car offence. The AlphaTauri driver has given his take on what happened.

Pierre Gasly has reflected on receiving a penalty for a second race weekend in a row at the United States Grand Prix. Having being handed a drive-through penalty – which was converted to an additional 20 seconds being added to his race time – two weeks earlier at the Japanese Grand Prix for speeding under the red flag, Gasly again found himself in trouble with the stewards in Austin. On this occasion, the AlphaTauri driver was deemed to have dropped more than 10 car lengths behind the Safety Car, for which he was given a five-second time penalty. However, things went from bad to worse for Gasly when he was handed a further 10-second penalty for failing to serve the initial penalty properly, with this dropping him down the order. He was also given penalty points on his licence, pushing his points total up to nine. After starting the race from P11, Gasly eventually finished in P13.

Gasly explains penalty situation

Gasly had been enjoying battling with the likes of Lando Norris before his penalty resulted him in slipping backwards. "I was fighting Lando. At that point everything was great," Gasly told media, including RacingNews365.com . "I need to review the Safety Car [incident], but I wasn't trying to do anything smart or clever. Another weekend, another penalty." Whilst Gasly says he was unaware that he had done anything wrong at the time, the Frenchman is accepting of the punishment that he was given. "If they decide something then you've just got to accept it," he explained. "But I was involved in many races where, at this pace, once you are pushing, I wasn't trying to do anything clever. It's just if the guy is going flat out in front of you as you brake to warm up the brakes, then suddenly you open massive gaps. "At the end of the day, it's my fault and then once we took the penalty and [with] the Safety Car, everybody bunched up. We lost five [or] six positions, and from fighting Lando we dropped to back of the field."

Gasly not counting down until end of 2022

Gasly now has three races remaining with AlphaTauri, with the 26-year-old set to move to Alpine for 2023. Despite having a run of difficult weekends, he insists that he is not counting down until the end of the current season. "I was really enjoying [the race]," Gasly said. "The pace we showed was really promising, because I was P8, I was in front of Lando. I had a great battle with him, [and] we were fighting with [Sebastian] Vettel. "I think it was very encouraging, but that's why I feel disappointed not to be rewarded, and then I got another penalty. It could have been a much better afternoon." AlphaTauri currently sit ninth in the Constructors' Championship, two points behind eighth-placed Haas.

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