The experience of racing a Honda engine will not give him any advantage over Max Verstappen, says new Red Bull driver Pierre Gasly.
Honda became Toro Rosso’s power unit supplier since 2018 and will add the senior squad as their customer from the 2019 season. Gasly took up Daniel Ricciardo’s position at Red Bull after the Aussie moved to Renault.
The Frenchman worked with Honda during his Super Formula days and then raced their F1 engine in 2018 season. He said any advantage he has with that experience will be more off-track than on the racing segment.
“It is always easy after to say exactly how much [the experience] is going to bring,” Gasly said. “It is difficult. It is more in terms of trust, confidence and the fact that I worked with the team, so they know in terms of feedback on what to expect from me.
“What I mean when we face certain issues and things, I want them to improve. So clearly in terms of communication that is the main point that will be useful for the team.
“After in terms of driving, I said it many times, at that level in F1 after three laps Max will be completely up to speed with the torque delivery, drivability of the engine. So, it is not going to change massively. But more the way to work with the Japanese, clearly this is a good thing.”
The first year of Toro Rosso-Honda relationship is deemed to have been successful. But there were some adjustments on both sides as they began to understand each other.
“Some people you need to show them respect and trust to really build the confidence. When you start working with them at the beginning, it is always a bit cold and you need to know each other. Clearly, I could see on their side opening up through the season, us giving them the trust to work together for the same targets.
“They came from quite a difficult situation with McLaren the year before, so they were a bit on the back foot at the beginning. They got better through the season and now I’m really happy with the relationship I have with them.”