Giovinazzi happy with pace against Raikkonen

Antonio Giovinazzi has said he’s pleased with the pace he has in relation to team-mate Kimi Raikkonen this season. 

In his first full campaign in the sport, the Alfa Romeo man has only beaten the Finn in one race and has 30 points less, but he’s happy with where he is pace wise nonetheless.

“From Paul Ricard, but also before, Monaco, I was always really close to Kimi, so I think in qualifying I’m there now, the performance is there,” he said as per F1i.com.

“I was struggling a bit in races but missing two years is not easy, but in races, we’re coming better.

“I’m sure the team knows this improvement and we are working really hard together, the team gives me big support to improve and so far we’re doing a good job.

“I think [the] performance is there, speed is there, [but the] points are not there, for many things.”

The Italian first drove in F1 in 2017 when he deputised for the injured Pascal Wehrlein, and he admits the two-year break from the sport is something he’s struggled with.

“It’s not easy, already if you miss two years without racing, in the end, I did only two races in 2017 and then in 2018 only one race, Le Mans, which is completely different from here,” Giovinazzi added.

“Then come back to F1, the best of motorsport is not really easy, but like I said at the beginning of the season I knew already my target was improving race by race. Take that feeling back, and this is what I’m doing.

“I started struggling a bit more, but in these last few races the pace is there compared to Kimi so I need to be happy with my performance.”

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Three-place grid penalty for Giovinazzi

Antonio Giovinazzi will drop three places at the Hungarian Grand Prix after impeding Lance Stroll in Q1.

SportPesa Racing Point’s Stroll was held up by Alfa Romeo’s Giovinazzi who held the racing line on approach to Turn 5, despite not being on a flying lap.

The incident forced Stroll to take a compromised line into the corner and he was ultimately eliminated in the first qualifying session.

Giovinazzi will now start P17 at the Hungaroring and received a penalty point on his superlicence to take his tally up to four for the last 12 months.

“The Stewards reviewed video, audio, GPS and telemetry evidence and heard from the driver of car 99 (Antonio Giovinazzi) and the driver of car 18 (Lance Stroll) and the team representatives,” read the stewards statement.

“Notwithstanding the fact that the team incorrectly informed the driver of car 99 that he was “in phase” with car 18, when in fact car 18 was on a push lap, it is the driver’s responsibility to ensure that on an in lap, he makes all reasonable endeavours to watch for following cars that are on a push lap and to ensure they are not impeded

“It was noted that car 99 was shown a blue flashing light halfway between turns 3 and 4. Telemetry and GPS data confirmed that car 18 lost considerable time through the section of track involved.

“The Stewards believe the driver of car 99 could, and should, have moved away from the racing line prior to Turn 4.”

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