Pierre Gasly says AlphaTauri came within a lap of retiring his AT01 during the early stages of Formula 1’s Austrian Grand Prix due to brake concerns.
Gasly held 12th place early on – maintaining his grid spot – and avoided most of the drama in a frenetic race to classify seventh.
It earned AlphaTauri points in its first race under its new guise, having rebranded after spending 13 years in Formula 1 as Toro Rosso.
But he almost joined the long list of retirements due to problems in the first phase of the race.
“For us we were that close from retiring the car,” said Gasly.
“The team were asking actually to box the car on lap 10 because my brake pedal was completely flat and the temperatures were going over the roof.
“I just asked for one more lap and they told me ‘OK, try’, and I stayed out, things got better and in the end we finished P7.
“So we were one lap to box the car and then next lap stayed out and got some points.”
AlphaTauri occupied a spot in the centre of the midfield for most of the weekend, behind McLaren, Racing Point, Renault and struggling Ferrari, but ahead of Haas, Alfa Romeo and Williams.
“We knew it was going to be challenging against the Renaults and McLarens and Racing Points,” said Gasly.
“In the end we just stayed out of trouble until the end, some good fighting and managed to get the points
“I think if someone had told us that we would have been P7 on Sunday we would have signed straight away at the beginning of the weekend.”
AlphaTauri is continuing to investigate the cause of Daniil Kvyat’s retirement.
Kvyat pulled off the circuit at Turn 1 on the penultimate lap after the rear-left of the AT01 failed.
Pirelli has already confirmed that Kvyat’s exit was not caused by a tyre failure.
Kvyat had run heavily over the Red Bull Ring’s kerbs shortly before his exit after battles with Renault’s Esteban Ocon and Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel.