Pierre Gasly will start his first Formula 1 race from 15th place on the grid in Malaysia after a solid showing for Toro Rosso at the Sepang International Circuit on Saturday.
Red Bull-backed youngster Gasly was confirmed to be making his grand prix debut earlier this week in place of Daniil Kvyat, who has been dropped due to poor form.
Gasly made an impressive start to qualifying by beating teammate Carlos Sainz Jr. in Q1, and finished just 0.156 seconds off his time in Q2, taking P15 on the grid.
““I think today was positive and I’m happy – your first qualifying in Formula 1 is always a special moment and one I was really looking forward to,” Gasly said.
“I tried to give my best and I think we made really good progress between FP3 and qualifying. I felt comfortable in the car in Q1 and then, in Q2, I kept on learning while giving my all and I’d say we can be satisfied with the result.
“I now look forward to tomorrow, my first Formula 1 race and something I’ve been dreaming of since I was very young…! I expect it to be a really good experience and I hope to keep improving tomorrow as well.
“You never know what can happen with the weather here so, if the rain and tricky conditions do appear, I will welcome it as I felt confident in the wet in FP1 on Friday and I’m sure it will make it all even more exciting.”
The Malaysian Grand Prix is live on NBCSN and the NBC Sports app from 2am ET on Sunday.
Webb and Tomac won the last four championships with two apiece in alternating years, but they were not one another’s primary rival for most of those seasons. On the average, however, the past four years show an incredible similarity with average points earned of 21.0 for Webb and 21.3 for Tomac. With five wins so far this season, Tomac (23 wins) leads Webb (19) in victories but Webb (43) edges Tomac (41) in podium finishes during this span.
Sexton still has a lot to say and after winning last week in Detroit, he is speaking up. The Supercross numbers are against him entering Seattle, however, because a points’ deficit this large after Round 10 has been erased only once. In 1983 David Bailey was 47 points behind Bob Hannah, and like Sexton he was also in third place. Bailey took the points’ lead with one race remaining.
The seven points Sexton was penalized last week for jumping in a red cross flag section in Detroit could prove extremely costly.
In fact, it has been a series of mistakes that has cost Sexton the most. In the last two weeks, he lost 10 points with a 10th-place finish to go with his penalty. Erase those, and all three riders hold their fate in their hands.
Plessinger’s heartbreak in Detroit is still fresh, but the upside of his run is that was his best of the season and could turn his fortunes around. Prior to that race, he led only seven laps in three mains. He was up front for 20 laps in Detroit with five of those being the fastest on the track.
Last week’s win by Hunter Lawrence tied him with his brother Jett Lawrence for 17th on the all-time wins’ list. With the focus shifting to 250 West for the next two rounds, Jett has a great opportunity to pull back ahead. The real test will be at the first East / West Showdown in East Rutherford, New Jersey on April 22.
Last Five Seattle Winners
450s 2022: Eli Tomac
2019: Marvin Musquin
2018: Eli Tomac
2017: Marvin Musquin
2014: Ryan Villopoto