Formula One

Gasly opens up on ‘contradictory emotions’ about Spa

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Alpine’s Pierre Gasly admits that racing at Spa brings about a set of “contradictory emotions” that combine his love for the Belgian track with the memory of the tragic death at the venue of his childhood friend Anthoine Hubert.

In honor of the late French hopeful, who lost his life in an F2 crash during the 2019 Belgian Grand Prix weekend, Gasly has organized a commemorative event called the ‘Run for Anthoine.’

This special gathering, scheduled for Thursday night, welcomes all members from the F1, F2, and F3 paddock to run together around Spa, paying tribute to the cherished memory of Hubert.

The event holds even greater significance as it comes in the wake of the recent passing of Dilano van ‘t Hoff during a Formula Regional European Championship race at Spa earlier in the month.

And tonight’s run will also be dedicated to honoring van ‘t Hoff’s memory.

For Gasly, participating in the run serves as a heartfelt way to commemorate his dear friend Hubert.

However, the experience is also a poignant reminder of the emotional tightrope walked by the Alpine driver as he cherishes the track he loves while remembering the somber day when his friend’s life was tragically cut short.

“I’m someone that is emotional,” Gasly said on Thursday at Spa. “I think I link places with emotions, and I’ve had the worst emotions of my life here.

“But at the same time, it’s one of my favourite tracks, so it’s very contradictory.

“I love this track, and I love racing this track, but at the same time I’ll never forget what I felt going down these stairs [in the paddock] when my parents told me the news.

“It’s obviously tough, but I accept the sport that we do, and it’s things you have got to live with. It’s also life, as sad as it can be.”

Gasly revealed that the idea of organizing a run in honor of Hubert had been quietly brewing within him for several months.

While some might perceive the run as a fleeting moment or as an insignificant part of the race weekend, the initiative holds immense personal significance for Gasly.

Anthoine Hubert victorious at Moncao.

“It might be small things for people, but it’s a lot bigger for me, and a lot more meaningful,” he said.

“It was a conversation which started early in the season. Everybody knows how close I was with Anthoine and I think they all know also how close he was with the team.

“This was organised well before the tragic incident which happened a couple of weeks ago, but I just think it’s great that we all as a community, when these things happen, everyone that is a part of Formula 1, whether it’s F2 or F3, the racing family comes together.”

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