Like many young talents, Pierre worked his way up through the lower classes before landing on the radar of a major team. Right after Red Bull included the Frenchman in their junior programme in 2014, Gasly was beaten in the Formula Renault 3.5 by another young talent in the programme: Carlos Sainz.
One year later, Gasly went to race full-time in Formula 2 (then GP2 class) but didn’t see good results straight away. It wasn't until the Frenchman switched to Prema in 2016 (where Gasly was placed alongside Antonio Giovinazzi) that the Frenchman woke up. He won the title and as a reward Gasly is given the title of reserve driver for Red Bull Racing.
In the following season, the Frenchman was also on the list to step into the vacant seat at Toro Rosso. The adventure was cancelled and Gasly, with the support of Red Bull, moved to Super Formula in Japan.
Although Gasly performed excellently in the series, the Frenchman fell just short of winning the title. That didn’t spoil the fun, though, as a spot does become available at Toro Rosso: Daniil Kvyat was dropped from the programme and Gasly could take his place alongside Carlos Sainz for the remainder of the Formula One season.
The Spaniard, however, also leaves during the season (to Renault as part of a major swap between the French, Honda and Toro Rosso), making Brendon Hartley Gasly's new teammate. For the US Grand Prix, Daniil Kvyat had to be called upon again, as Pierre had to complete his final race of the Super Formula season: A race that was cancelled due to weather conditions, leaving Gasly stranded in P2.
Brendon Hartley and Pierre Gasly continued to form Toro Rosso's driver duo in 2018, with Gasly evidently managing to get better results. The highlight of the season took place in Bahrain, where the young Frenchman managed to finish fourth. The rest of the season, however, saw a decline in results as the number of grid penalties increased.
Toro Rosso became Red Bull's guinea pig in order to make the Honda engine as good as possible, before the Milton Keynes-based team themselves started driving the Japanese power unit in 2019. Not only did the engine transfer to Red Bull, Pierre also moved as a new driver for the team. Daniel Ricciardo left for Renault, leaving Gasly to sit alongside Max Verstappen. Daniil Kvyat was called up again by Helmut Marko to fill the spot at Toro Rosso.
The switch to Red Bull came too soon for Gasly. The young Frenchman was nowhere near Verstappen's pace and already caused Red Bull's management headaches during the winter tests when he parked his car in the wall twice. During the first half of the season Gasly never really found his rhythm and was replaced in the summer.
Where Kvyat was downgraded, Gasly is coming back to life. The pressure seems off his shoulders and the Toro Rosso car suits the Frenchman's style much better. The ultimate reward for his development came in Brazil 2019, when the Frenchman finished second in the chaotic Interlagos race.
Consistent results in 2021
In 2020, Pierre Gasly continued that upward trend in his first year at AlphaTauri. Although the start was difficult, the Frenchman's car came to life at Monza. A good strategy in a chaotic race made for a phenomenal race in which the Frenchman took his first F1 victory. He eventually finished tenth in the standings.
Good results in Portimao and at the Nürburgring also showed that the Frenchman has made many steps forward since his relegation within the Red Bull family. That confidence was also expressed by his current employer, who extended Gasly's contract until the new rule changes in 2022.
So in 2021, the Formula One driver raced for AlphaTauri, this time with rookie Yuki Tsunoda at his side. 2021 was the year Gasly proved himself as a team leader in his fifth F1 season. With a podium finish and consistent performances, the Frenchman proved to be a good teacher for his new teammate.
Pierre Gasly in 2023
2022 was an extremely difficult year for AlphaTauri and Gasly only managed to score a few points. In 2023, he will leave for Alpine with Red Bull's approval. Better results should be possible there for the Frenchman, who gets his old arch-rival Esteban Ocon as a teammate.
The line-up of Gasly and Ocon promises to be an exciting one, as it is no secret that the two cannot like each other. However, they were once good friends, so as teammates, they will have to put aside their differences and try to revive their old friendship.