We were already delighted when Daniil Kvyat finished a brilliant third in Germany, back in July. So imagine how today felt when Pierre Gasly stood on the second step of the 2019 Brazilian Grand Prix podium. It was Scuderia Toro Rosso’s third ever podium and our best result since Sebastian Vettel won in Monza in 2008.
It’s Pierre’s best ever F1 finish to date, a great end to an incredible race in which all 71 laps were action packed. Pierre had started from a competitive sixth on the grid and managed to keep up with the cars ahead, doing a brilliant job of managing all the restarts after the many Safety Cars, which featured in the penultimate race of the year.
Gasly kept his head even after the final safety car following the collision of the two Ferraris. You have to be ready to grasp any opportunity with both hands and that’s what he did, keeping cool especially in that final drag race against Hamilton to the line. The Honda PU helped in that regard and thank to Max Verstappen, the Japanese company now has 75 F1 wins and 184 podium finishes. It was a special day for our partner who had not finished first and second since the 1991 Japanese Grand Prix with Ayrton Senna taking the win that day to clinch his last championship title. The result also came on the day that would have been company founder Soichiro Honda’s birthday, the visionary industrialist having been born on 17 November 1906.
In fact, although Hamilton was on the podium, his later 5 second penalty meant that third place actually went to Carlos Sainz, which made it an all Toro Rosso alumni top three. It was just a shame he could not have been on the real podium to celebrate with our guys. Max, who was with us in 2015 and ’16 and now with Red Bull, has won eight times now and we congratulate him for today’s victory. Pierre will also be part of our future as he is signed up for 2020. And for Carlos who was with us in 2015, ’16 and ’17, it was also his first top three finish. Daniel Ricciardo who drove for us from 2011 to 2013 was also in the points as was Daniil Kvyat. In fact half the top ten used to drive for us, proof of the effectiveness of our tutelage of talented youngsters.
We are now back to sixth in the Constructors’ classification, not just because of Pierre, but also thanks to Daniil’s point for tenth place at the end of a complicated but thrilling Brazilian Grand Prix.
There’s still one more round of this year’s world championship and all of us in Faenza Italy, Bicester UK and our Honda colleagues in Milton Keynes UK and Sakura Japan will be doing our very best to end the year on a high. So far in 2019 we have finished on the podium twice, something we have never done before and we are pleased to share our delight, with you our fans wherever you are around the world.
|1||Max Verstappen||Aston Martin Red Bull Racing||1:33:14.678|
|2||Pierre Gasly||Red Bull Toro Rosso Honda||06.077|
|3||Carlos Sainz||McLaren F1 Team||08.896|
|4||Kimi Räikkönen||Alfa Romeo Racing||09.452|
|5||Antonio Giovinazzi||Alfa Romeo Racing||10.201|
|6||Daniel Ricciardo||Renault F1 Team||10.541|
|7||Lewis Hamilton||Mercedes AMG Petronas Motorsport||11.139|
|8||Lando Norris||McLaren F1 Team||11.204|
|9||Sergio Pérez||SportPesa Racing Point F1 Team||11.529|
|10||Daniil Kvyat||Red Bull Toro Rosso Honda||11.931|
|11||Kevin Magnussen||Haas F1 Team||12.732|
|12||George Russell||ROKiT Williams Racing||13.599|
|13||Romain Grosjean||Haas F1 Team||14.247|
|14||Alexander Albon||Aston Martin Red Bull Racing||14.927|
|15||Nico Hülkenberg||Renault F1 Team||18.059|
|16||Robert Kubica||ROKiT Williams Racing||1 LAP(s)|
|17||Sebastian Vettel||Scuderia Ferrari||5 LAP(s)|
|18||Charles Leclerc||Scuderia Ferrari||5 LAP(s)|
|19||Lance Stroll||SportPesa Racing Point F1 Team||5 LAP(s)|
|20||Valtteri Bottas||Mercedes AMG Petronas Motorsport||21 LAP(s)|