Antonio Giovinazzi, Alfa Romeo, Shanghai International Circuit, 2019

Giovinazzi: Adjusting to F1 “not easy” after two years out of racing

2019 F1 season

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Antonio Giovinazzi admits he has found it difficult to adjust back to F1 after two years largely out of competition.

The Sauber driver spent most of the past two seasons working as Ferrari’s simulator driver. He said it has been “not easy” to get used to driving in competitive sessions again and he finds he “loses a little bit [on] the push lap in qualifying”.

“It’s just so many things that you can study and try to learn,” Giovinazzi explained. “It’s not only the [flying] lap, you need to learn the warm-up, the out-lap, brakes, managing the traffic.

“It’s quite complicated so I need just time to learn these kinds of things. It’s not really easy to come after two years without racing. These are the things you need to improve and this is what I’m doing.”

Giovinazzi said he is paying close attention to team mate Kimi Raikkonen to see how he can improve.

“I think to also have Kimi as a team mate is a good reference. When I stop in the garage, watch his data and try to see what I can improve.

“[I’ll] just keep working like that and I think all the things will come together and then it will be just a lot more easy to have a good result.”

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Dieter Rencken
Dieter Rencken has held full FIA Formula 1 media accreditation since 2000, during which period he has reported from over 300 grands prix, plus...
Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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  • 17 comments on “Giovinazzi: Adjusting to F1 “not easy” after two years out of racing”

    1. Try kubica 8 years.

      1. Kubica was at least good 8 years ago.

    2. I feel a little bit of whining here.. just look at Norris or Albon.

      1. They were racing last year… Did you read the article?

        1. @andycz, as you note, both Norris and Albon went straight from GP2 into Formula 1 without any break, whereas Giovinazzi’s had fewer opportunities to drive a single seater car for some time. True, he did have some practise sessions during 2017 and 2018 to drive a car, but in 2018 the only time that he raced on track was in a GTE car at Le Mans – most of his work over the past two years had been in the simulator for Ferrari.

          It doesn’t help that, if the rumours are true, Giovinazzi is being hauled back into Ferrari’s simulator inbetween races, as it sounds as if Ferrari values his input into developing the SF90 more than that of Wehrlein or Hartley. It might help Ferrari, but it sounds as if it is disrupting the work that Giovinazzi wanted to do with Sauber to help him understand his own car.

    3. It’s just so many things that you can study and try to learn,” Giovinazzi explained. “It’s not only the [flying] lap, you need to learn the warm-up, the out-lap, brakes, managing the traffic.

      It sounds like you need to be doing some homework.

      When I stop in the garage, watch his data and try to see what I can improve.

      Homework will give you a better insight into what Kimi’s doing.

      1. @drycrust, no offence, but it does seem a bit patronising and arrogant to dismissively say “oh, do a bit of homework”, as if he is not doing anything at all.

        1. Thank you for correcting me. I’m sure you are right and that he is putting in a lot of effort to reduce his lap times.

    4. Vandorne had a similar year off. Totally destroyed his F1 career. This should be a warning to all GP2 stars.

      1. Vandoorne was at least racing super formula in japan, no?

        1. Correct – and I think Stoffel gave a decent account of himself. It just so happened he had the twin difficulties of an awkward car and a very fast veteran team-mate.

      2. W (@vishnusxdx)
        21st April 2019, 8:14

        The thing that hindered Stoffel the most was the brutal way he was treated. Inferior materials, second-choice strategies and straight-up miscommunication. All to favour “i’m-the-best-ever” first driver of the team. Articles where he speaks out are steadily being released. I expect a lot more where he will uncover that uneasy situation.

        Watch him rule Formula E in the coming years.

        1. @vishnusxdx, that sounds like a rather bold assertion given that Vandoorne is currently 14th in the Formula E championship right now…

          1. Hi ‘anon‘ – I see you’ve also noticed the increasing trend towards unfounded assertion, and patronising arrogance in comments… I realise it’s now become a ‘tradition’ online, but no more welcome for that…

          2. W (@vishnusxdx)
            21st April 2019, 16:30

            If you would have been watching these races, you’d prolly have caught on that the team has been experiences all the typical rookie errors and gremlins new teams tend to have. Every time there was a wet track, stoffels been battling for the superpole. Rain still IS the equiliser when it comes to car performance.

            The “tradition online” tends to put personal opinion and short-sightedness above the facts and the greater picture, which I find far more frustrating.

            1. @vishnusxdx, isn’t that in part proving the point though, which is that there is still a significant role for the team to play and that we do not know how that element is going to play out over the coming years? It’s no good having potential if you then cannot use it when it matters.

              Add to that the planned expansion of the grid, with Porsche entering next year – and they have a lot of personnel with considerable experience to throw at the sport, given their withdrawal from the WEC – and the plans for increased development of the powertrain over time, which could shift the competitive order in the sport, and you have a situation where I think it is rather premature to so boldly predict that a driver will “rule Formula E” for years.

              For all that anybody really knows right now, we could see Vandoorne be highly successful, or he could equally find himself in the wrong team at the wrong time and end up having a far more modest run of luck in the sport.

    5. Marcus come back please! Right now! All is forgiven.

    Comments are closed.