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From bad luck to first F1 points: Oscar Piastri’s redemption story



Oscar Piastri redemption story first F1 points 2023 australien gp

In his third race in Formula 1, Oscar Piastri demonstrated why McLaren was eager to sign him, securing his first points finish with a solid eighth-place performance at the Australian Grand Prix. While luck played a small part in his result,

Piastri’s performance was commendable, and F1Lead conducted a comprehensive review of his entire Grand Prix race to analyze his strengths and identify areas where he can still improve.

Oscar Piastri redemption story first F1 points

Oscar Piastri expressed his satisfaction at finishing on a positive note in the eventful Australian Grand Prix in Formula 1. He secured his first points finish by coming in eighth place after successfully navigating through the race’s multiple red flags. Despite crossing the line in ninth, he gained a position after Carlos Sainz was penalized following the race. Piastri managed to avoid the on-track chaos and emerged unscathed.

During his initial two appearances in Formula 1, Oscar Piastri didn’t perform as well on the track as he had made headlines for his high-profile contract issues the previous year. However, Piastri proved himself with a solid eighth-place finish in his third race in Australia, along with some vindication as “things went wrong for other people.” Piastri qualified 16th, with a deficit of 0.274 seconds behind his teammate, much of which was lost in the Turn 10/11. According to team principal Andrea Stella, Piastri continued his trend of staying “close to Lando in most of the corners” early in the season.

Piastri then proceeded to drive an error-free race and managed to avoid trouble during the final standing restart, where the Alpines crashed beside him, to secure his first points finish. His performance was commendable, and any luck he received was well-deserved, especially after his unfortunate incident in Saudi Arabia, where he collided with Pierre Gasly in the first corner, causing debris damage to Norris’s front wing.

When asked by F1Lead if he believed in karmic justice after his first two races, Piastri admitted that the team had faced some tough luck. Piastri acknowledged that the team had faced some tough luck in the first two races of the season. He stated that in Bahrain, both he and his teammate had encountered problems, and in Saudi Arabia, they were both taken out due to a collision. Therefore, he expressed satisfaction in benefiting from the misfortunes of other drivers during the Australian Grand Prix.

Oscar Piastri redemption story first F1 points

However, Piastri’s eighth-place finish was not solely the result of luck or merely circulating while others hit trouble. F1Lead conducted a comprehensive review of Piastri’s entire Grand Prix race to analyze his performance, assess his strengths, and identify areas where he can still improve.

At the start of the race, Piastri made an impressive start, entering Turn one on the inside of Magnussen from Haas, with Nyck de Vries from AlphaTauri on the outside of both drivers. Although there was slight contact with the Haas car’s left-rear, Piastri did an excellent job of avoiding any significant damage and staying out of trouble.

However, Piastri’s exit from Turn 2 was compromised due to his tight line into the first corner, forcing him to slot in behind Magnussen in 15th place. He was then promoted to 14th when Charles Leclerc went off at Turn 3 and further up to 13th after Alpine brought Esteban Ocon in under the safety car resulting from Leclerc’s off.


This strategic situation potentially put Piastri in a difficult spot. Behind him, all the drivers had pitted except for De Vries, who was on the hard tires, and they all had aspirations of running to the end. However, Piastri stuck to his Plan A, with a more conventional pitstop strategy in place.

After the safety car restart, Piastri had a decent restart, but he wasn’t as close to Magnussen as he would have preferred. However, before that stint could play out, Alex Albon crashed his Williams at Turn 6, prompting the deployment of the safety car. McLaren instructed Piastri to stay out, which proved to be a wise decision as the safety car was unexpectedly upgraded to a red flag.

During the red flag, Piastri reported some understeer and warned about graining on his first set of tires. However, the most significant advantage was the ability to change his tires during the stoppage. McLaren switched Piastri from his starting medium Pirelli tires to the harder compound with the intention of running them until the end of the race.

After the restart, Piastri began in 10th place, just behind his teammate Norris. However, he did not have as good a start, experiencing some wheelspin. Ferrari driver Carlos Sainz passed him around the outside into Turn 1 after stopping under the safety car before the red flag and losing positions, but Piastri was not concerned about the pace advantage. This left Piastri in 11th place, with Sainz passing Norris soon after, putting Piastri behind his teammate. When the DRS was enabled again, he was instructed to hold position behind Norris.

On lap 14, Norris overtook Yuki Tsunoda on the approach to Turn 9, leaving Piastri’s main objective to follow his teammate past. He attempted to overtake Tsunoda entering Turn 1 on the following lap, but Tsunoda defended and edged left at the corner’s entry, resulting in Piastri’s front-right wheel rubbing against the AlphaTauri’s front-left. Fortunately, there was no damage.

Piastri commented on the incident, saying, “It was a bit of a squeeze, but no harm was done. We both lived to see another day.”

Unfortunately, this incident marked the beginning of a frustrating phase for Piastri during the race. Piastri was able to gain a position to move up to 10th place when a virtual safety car was deployed on lap 18 to retrieve George Russell’s Mercedes. Despite this, he was still unable to pass Tsunoda and only came close when he pulled alongside on the outside approaching Turn 11 on lap 21. However, he wasn’t able to make the move and wisely decided to back out.

Piastri inevitably came under threat from faster cars behind him. Sergio Perez, who was recovering from an earlier incident, was the first to overtake him. Piastri wisely didn’t put up much resistance, allowing Perez to pass him smoothly while approaching Turn 9. His race engineer, Tom Stallard, then advised him to “follow him through, Oscar,” as Perez was now free to attack Tsunoda. However, Tsunoda cooperated by letting Perez pass him on the run to Turn 9 on the next lap, denying Piastri an opportunity to overtake.

Oscar Piastri redemption story first F1 points

On lap 24, Piastri had a chance to overtake Tsunoda into Turn 9, but he was not in a good position to make a move, and the same was true at Turn 11. Two laps later, he was in a good position to attack Tsunoda entering Turn 3 but was unable to make a move. He fell to 12th place when Ocon overtook him into Turn 9.

Once Ocon overtook Tsunoda on lap 27, Piastri returned to chasing the AlphaTauri car. He was finally able to overtake Tsunoda on lap 29, first taking a vague look into Turn 3 before replicating Norris’s pass by overtaking on the outside while approaching Turn 9.

Fifteen laps earlier, Piastri was right behind Norris when his teammate passed Tsunoda. However, Piastri slipped back to over 12 seconds behind Norris, who was now chasing Haas driver Nico Hulkenberg. Piastri’s time lost behind Tsunoda disconnected him from this battle.

Oscar Piastri redemption story first F1 points

Piastri acknowledged the challenge of overtaking, given the McLaren’s struggles on the straights, as they are currently one of the least aerodynamically efficient cars on the grid. “It’s tricky, we obviously know we’re quite slow on the straights at the moment, which is something we’re looking to address,” he said.

Piastri acknowledged that the AlphaTauri car was not significantly faster on the straight, but even with the fourth DRS zone, it was challenging to overtake at this circuit. He believed he still had some learning to do about using the battery effectively for overtaking, but he was happy to gain more practice in this regard. “It’s still good learning,” he said.

Despite the difficulties, Piastri was content with his race from this point onwards. With clear air, his main objective was to try and close the gap to the cars ahead, namely Norris and Hulkenberg, while also building an advantage over the cars behind him.

Piastri was encouraged by his pace during this phase of the race. He mentioned that the start and the first lap were pretty good, but he got stuck behind Yuki for too long during the middle of the race, and couldn’t find a way to overtake him. Piastri tried different approaches with the battery to use it effectively, but once he overtook Tsunoda, he found that his pace was pretty good.

Oscar Piastri redemption story first F1 points

During this phase, Stallard provided Piastri with brief feedback on areas to improve his driving. Initially, he was advised to increase minimum speed in Turn 1 and then focus on the exit. He was then instructed to work on exit speed out of the Turn 9/10 sweep to improve speed on the run to Turn 11. Finally, he found a little more time in the Turn 4 left-hander.

It was a somewhat solitary phase of the race, but it gave Piastri the opportunity to work on his resource management while maximising his pace. During this phase, his lap time loss to Norris reduced to just under a quarter of a second per lap on average.

When the safety car was deployed, Piastri was called in for soft tires. Although the race was subsequently red-flagged, his lead over Zhou Guanyu behind was significant enough that he could have made a stop without losing his position, even if Alfa Romeo had not brought its car in.

During the red flag period, Piastri reported that he was satisfied with the car’s balance. Although he noted a slight hint of understeer, he didn’t believe it was a significant problem. An attempt was made to replicate that balance on the soft tires by adding a little more front wing.

When the race restarted, Piastri began in 11th place, but he experienced some wheel spin in the second phase, allowing Tsunoda to get ahead of him. Nevertheless, he stayed clear of the chaos and held seventh place when the race was stopped. When the positions were reset for the single-lap roll round to the chequered flag, he dropped to ninth due to the absence of the Alpines. However, he advanced to eighth when Sainz was penalised.

Piastri expressed his satisfaction with earning his first career points and being able to do so in front of his home crowd. He acknowledged the chaotic nature of the race, which saw three red flags, and was pleased with the team’s ability to stay out of trouble and ultimately secure a points finish.

Piastri’s performance in the race was well-executed and level-headed, especially in terms of his patience while stuck in traffic. It was a tangible result that demonstrated why McLaren was eager to sign him. As the team’s car improves, there will likely be even better results, and Piastri acknowledged that there were areas for improvement, such as eliminating the time loss when duelling Tsunoda and learning how to manage race stints at the level of Norris.


Overall, it was an encouraging weekend for Piastri, and his willingness to highlight areas for improvement after the race was a positive sign. While he has demonstrated his ability to stack up

Piastri’s impressive moments throughout the race suggest that he has the ability to compete with Norris and give him a tough competition in the future. He is also exhibiting qualities that McLaren anticipated when they signed him.

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