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Tech & Science After a fire: Gasly faces a grid penalty when changing the engine

22:50  23 october  2020
22:50  23 october  2020 Source:   motorsport-total.com

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Pierre Gaslys Honda-Motor fing am Nachmittag Feuer © Motorsport Images Pierre Gasly's Honda engine caught fire in the afternoon

Pierre Gasly involuntarily interrupted the second free practice session in Portugal . His Honda drive in the rear of the AlphaTauri car caught fire. The "blackout" could have repercussions for the French: If he changes the engine, he is threatened with a penalty.

"Five seconds before I stopped, everything switched off. The steering, the electronics in the car," said Gasly after the session. "We are now investigating what happened there. The rear of the car burned heavily."

The Frenchman immediately hopped out of the car after having involuntarily stopped at the edge of the track. The marshals were not on the spot immediately as they first had to cross the route. It took a few minutes until they were finally able to extinguish the fire, which severely damaged the stern.

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Gasly is already at the limit with all drive components : This season it has already used three combustion engines, three MGU-H, three MGU-K, three turbos, two control units and two energy stores. If you switch to a new component, there is a risk of a penalty.

Before the fire broke out, he was able to complete 27 laps in the afternoon. At the end of the session, Gasly was in an encouraging seventh place. However, he will have to catch up a little on Saturday as he was only on the hard tire.

"Of course that's not ideal, especially because I couldn't drive the soft tires. We only drove with the hard ones. It's never great on a new track. But that's the way it is, unfortunately," he regrets the technical defect.

In order to be able to prepare for qualifying and the race in the best possible way, Gasly will also use the data from team mate Daniil Kwjat. He was "quite happy" with the pace on Friday. But: "I don't feel completely comfortable in the car yet. We can improve tomorrow."

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The third free practice will be particularly important for him. "Because we have to catch up on the laps [that we couldn't do today]." Kvyat only finished 17th in the second training session. In the overall result , the AlphaTauri drivers finished eighth (Gasly / +1.238 seconds) and 15 (Kwjat / + 2.338) on Friday.

"It was really difficult to get into the rhythm," admits the Russian. "It's not very clear at the moment. We have to analyze it, but the feeling wasn't so good today. That wasn't much fun today. I had hardly any grip, the track is very slippery."

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