Home Featured Critic Ayumu Iwasa warns performance improvements are needed

Critic Ayumu Iwasa warns performance improvements are needed

by Alejandro Alonso Lopez

Photo: Red Bull Content Pool

Ayumu Iwasa was thinking about how he was far from satisfied with his sophomore Formula 2 season as he stood on the feature race podium at the Red Bull Ring.

The DAMS driver had come from 16th on the grid to finish second, as a perfectly timed safety car period helped him to maximise his alternate strategy.

This result leaves him third in the standings with 101 points, meaning he is 24 points behind championship leader Frederik Vesti with 12 races to go. At this point last season, Iwasa was only 13th in the standings with 38 points.

“That was one of my best like enjoyable races in F2 because the strategy worked quite a lot,” the Red Bull junior declared. “Also the pace through the race was quite good, even the prime stint. I think that’s why I could come to P2 at the end.

“The car was better in the race compared to qualifying. Quali was a bit more difficult. I was feeling not badly but still the car was not enough to be on the top. I think we could come back quite well enough with the set-up. And also I was able to manage a tyre quite well. The reason why I missed on quali was also my track limits. We couldn’t put it all together.”

Always critical with himself, Iwasa was not happy with how the first half of the season has gone.

“I was struggling a lot from the beginning of the season. And the main problem was just we were not able to perform. We were not able to show our performance on the track even [when] we had a good speed. We had to make it through the weekend.

“Even on my side, I was struggling a lot with the performance bit. Sometimes I was able to perform well with a quite difficult situation. For example, Jeddah the sprint race, it was quite a good experience from my side. But for example, Baku and Monaco, we were not able to put it all together. From now on, I think what we need to do is quite clear.

He then followed: “I’m second year in F2, so I have quite good experience from last year. So just my target was to put all together with the team because I knew that I had a quite good speed since the second part of last season.

“We were trying to analyse and analyse the data to improve it because we were feeling that we were missing the speed compared to last year.

“Actually, since Barcelona, Monaco, we were coming back progressively. That’s why we had a quite good race speed today. Then even free practice on Friday was not bad. Just we are missing the speed in qualifying.

“So I think that we need to do more steps, but it’s not big for sure because we are coming back. I think we need to work on some tasks together,” he concluded.