Pierre Gasly hails 'best day of my life' after surprise Brazil GP second
Gasly secures first F1 podium and thanks Honda for helping him achieve his 'dream'; Also pays tribute to late friend Hubert
By Matt Morlidge
Last Updated: 17/11/19 10:43pm
"Unbelievable". "A dream". "The best day of my life".
Pierre Gasly was understandably delighted after his shock second place for Toro Rosso in Brazil - just three months after losing his Red Bull drive.
The Frenchman, replaced by Alex Albon in August, secured his first F1 podium and his team's best finish in over a decade by finishing behind Max Verstappen at Interlagos, as he led the midfield and then took advantage of Lewis Hamilton and Alex Albon's late collision.
"It's just the best day of my life right now," said Gasly, who erupted with emotion on team radio.
"It's about the last few months but also all the efforts and sacrifices you do since you are young dreaming about this day.
"Your first dream is to achieve Formula 1 and then after you dream about your first podium. I didn't really imagine it was going to happen right now, but I just gave everything I had all the time. It's just fantastic.
"That's why I love motorsport and that's why I want to stay in the sport for so many years because this kind of day is just amazing."
Gasly dramatically beat Hamilton, who was later handed a penalty, to the line by just 0.062s and added: "A big thanks to Honda. Without them I wouldn't have held on to second."
It's been a rollercoaster, emotional year for Gasly - and not just because of his Red Bull axing. He lost a great friend in F2 driver Anthoine Hubert, who died after a tragic crash in Belgium in September.
"There are thousands of thoughts going through your mind [when crossing the line]," Gasly told Sky F1. "I thought about Anthoine, who was one of my best buddies, who would have dreamed to be up there.
"I thought about all the people who supported me through my career to put me in that position."
He added: "Since I came back in Toro Rosso I just tried to think about how I can make myself better and try to work on the little details that make you better.
"I told the team when I came back that I really wanted to take all the opportunities each weekend, but I never imagined this would happen in Brazil, second place in Toro Rosso, fighting Lewis on the line - it's just unbelievable."
Gasly was also praised by his former F1 boss.
"In that environment, it's a bit less pressured, the car's perhaps a little easier to drive, and he's driving brilliantly," said Red Bull's Christian Horner. "I think that's great for him, great for his confidence, and for Toro Rosso as well."