Sir Jackie Stewart has vowed to follow the career of French driver Pierre Gasly more closely.
The F1 legend and triple world champion, 84, sat down with Gasly on the verge of the US GP in Austin to check out the Alpine driver’s tribute helmet to the late Francois Cevert.
Cevert, Stewart’s Tyrrell teammate at the time, was killed in a grisly crash at the 1973 US GP at Watkins Glen – when the Frenchman was just two years older than Gasly.
“He would have been champion, that’s for sure,” Stewart told Gasly in a joint interview with L’Equipe sports newspaper.
“It’s very moving to see this,” the Scot said of the replica helmet. “It’s a very beautiful moment for me but also very sad to see this helmet again. It was my friend’s,” he added.
Gasly then told Stewart the story of how Red Bull’s Dr Helmut Marko once likened him to Cevert.
Indeed, Marko had described Gasly as like Cevert: “Quick, naughty and devoted to the finer things in life.”
Gasly said: “I really liked Francois Cevert, so I found that flattering.
“You know Helmut, he likes to make headlines with his comments but it’s very clearly a compliment.”
Stewart replied: “Oh, I didn’t know that. But if there’s one thing I know about Helmut, who I once raced against, it’s that he knows how to evaluate his drivers very well.
“So if he said that, he knows what he’s saying. I’ll follow you with even more attention now,” he promised Gasly.