New Zealand’s Brendon Hartley has completed the 2018 French Grand Prix in P14 following a smooth race in the Scuderia Toro Rosso STR13.
Returning to the iconic Circuit Paul Ricard in the Le Castellet region of France for the first time in many years, the circuit’s open nature provided plenty of challenges for the drivers.
It was a dramatic opening sequence of corners as the lights went out on the 53 lap race that saw Hartley pick his way carefully through the scattered debris and stranded cars to complete the opening lap unscathed as the Safety Car was deployed. Now up to P13, Hartley ran a long opening stint before making his one and only trip to the pits on lap 38.
Returning to the track in P17, Hartley set on a charge after the Sauber of Marcus Ericsson, eventually closing the gap down to just 1.4 seconds at the chequered flag.
Brendon Hartley – #28 Scuderia Toro Rosso:
“It was a clean and good race, but starting last it was hard to make much headway. I had a good battle with Marcus early on, but he got me back during the pit stops. I kept out of trouble on the first lap – a couple of cars cut the chicane and I didn’t make up much ground, but at least I was able to keep the car safe. I wish we could have made some more progress but ultimately we didn’t have the pace today. I moved forward and got by the two Williams, but I don’t think there was much more we could do in the race, it’s tricky when you start at the back.”
Round 9 – Austrian Grand Prix, Sunday 1st July 2018.