Australian rookie Oscar Piastri described his fourth-place finish for McLaren in Sunday’s British Grand Prix as a “bitter-sweet” moment after he missed out on a podium due to a safety Car deployment.
The 22-year-old Melburnian had been running third before the delay when Kevin Magnussen’s Haas suffered an engine failure.
Seven-time world champion Lewis Hamilton of Mercedes took advantage to take a ‘cheap’ pit stop and third place behind the triumphant Max Verstappen of Red Bull and his McLaren team-mate Lando Norris.
“It’s a bitter-sweet result,” he said of his best Formula One result in his debut season.
“That’s the best way to describe how I feel. The most pleasing aspect was that we achieved these results on merit.
“I think it’s one thing to get these results by lucky incidents, but we were genuinely the second quickest team today, which was a very happy surprise.
“On my side, we were unlucky with the safety car timing with Lewis getting a free stop. But it’s nice in some ways to be disappointed with a fourth place, considering where we were at the start of the year!”
He praised the team for their recent hard work and improvement.
“A massive credit to the team,” he said. “Clearly the upgrades we’ve brought to the car are working an absolute treat. Exciting times for the future and it’s nice to be back towards the front.
“I think we should still have weaknesses at some tracks, but we still have strengths. And I think Silverstone is probably good for our car, I would say.”
The team also enjoyed a strong performance in Austria, another circuit which, like Silverstone, puts an onus on good aerodynamic efficiency.
“It’s nice to have that performance two races in a row and we’ll be pushing to keep that going forwards. It’s a very, very happy moment. Putting trophies aside, to have so many points for the team is a fantastic result.
“We’ve got a long way to go to challenge the next few teams, but anything is possible if we can keep having weekends like this.”
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