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Gasly believes he is proof money not always key to reaching F1

Written by  Jan 08, 2018

Pierre Gasly believes his rise to Formula 1 offers hope to other young drivers that talent can still be enough to reach the top even without financial sponsors.

The young Frenchman made his debut with Toro Rosso at last year's Malaysian Grand Prix, replacing Daniil Kvyat, and, though he has yet to score a point, will stay on alongside Brendon Hartley in 2018 at the junior Red Bull team.

Though arguably he did not need backers due to being part of the young driver program at the Austrian energy drinks giant, he still suggests his ability to meet the standards required by himself without his own team behind him should encourage others.

"We all know it’s not always about performance, you need to have a strong back-up," he told Autosport.

“I didn’t have any manager, so I was in a way alone, fighting against all the big sharks in this paddock and trying to make my place and I’m really happy I managed to do it.

"It is also good for the young drivers [to see] it is still possible, you can make it, it is not all about money. It is possible to do it without."

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His comments come as the power of financial backing is set to see Robert Kubica's attempt at a comeback fall short with Williams as Sergey Sirotkin offers over around double from his Russian sponsor than the Pole can achieve.

Gasly too spoke about the hurdles he faced to get to where he is today.

“If you look at what I’ve done, without being arrogant, but I won the 2.0 [Eurocup], I finished second in 3.5,” he noted. “Some people after 3.5, finishing second went straight to F1 – thinking about like Daniel [Ricciardo], Jules [Bianchi].

“Then I went to GP2, I won GP2, I was second-youngest after Nico [Rosberg]. I looked at the other winners: Nico Hulkenberg is in F1, Lewis Hamilton is in F1, Nico is in F1, Stoffel [Vandoorne] is in F1, so why should I not go to F1?

"I go to Super Formula and I’m like ‘yeah, OK, it’s another step, if I do well again there, it will be four different series and if I’m competitive in these all four, at some point it has to come!’

“So I just kept pushing, for me it was really always in my mind.”

 

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