Oscar Piastri’s dad: We’re hoping for a boring British GP!

Oscar Piastri sealed a stunning Saturday for McLaren at the 2023 British Grand Prix with P3 in qualifying

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Oscar Piastri‘s father Chris paid tribute to his son after the McLaren rookie secured P3 in qualifying for the 2023 British Grand Prix – his best result in Formula 1 so far.

Piastri starts one place behind teammate Lando Norris after a stunning Saturday for McLaren, who aren’t under-represented in the Silverstone grandstands, in just the tenth qualifying session of the Australian starlet’s career.

Predictably, Chris added he’s hoping for a dull race at the front as Piastri chases his first F1 podium – or even McLaren‘s first win at Silverstone since 2008.

“I can’t have too many good moments in one weekend!” Chris said, when asked by Total-Motorsport.com if he’s daring to dream for the grand prix.

“I just said to Zak Brown, we’re both hoping for a boring race, where the front of the field spreads out and it’s just a nice boring run to the line, Oscar and Lando on the podium P2 and P3 then I think that would be phenomenal.

“We’ll keep our fingers crossed and you never know what’s going to happen as Lando showed in Austria, hopefully the tyres hang in and we’ll see what the British weather does, you never know.”

Chris Piastri (Oscar Piastri’s father, green shirt) celebrates his son’s stunning third place in qualifying for the 2023 British Grand Prix | Total-Motorsport

The results marks a stunning upturn in McLaren‘s form after a deeply disappointing pre-season for the team.

A troubling pre-season testing was followed by a catastrophic Bahrain GP where Piastri became the first retirement of the season just 13 laps in, and Norris had to pit six times due to a pneumatic pressure leak and was the only driver to finish two laps down.

However, McLaren bounced back to record five points finishes ahead of the Austrian GP, where Norris‘ car featured significant upgrades that were initially planned for Silverstone.

Norris qualified fourth – and third for the sprint race – and held onto that fourth place in the grand prix to secure McLaren‘s best finish of the season.

While Piastri was unable match his teammate in the older spec car, it was clear the team had made a step forward and this result only confirms that.

Alpine drama doesn’t play on Piastri’s mind

Fernando Alonso, reserve driver Oscar Piastri and Esteban Ocon during Alpine F1 A522 Launch REUTERS/Sarah Meyssonnier

Piastri‘s breakout moment is all the more poignant as it comes almost 12 months after he was at the centre of one of the biggest storms of the 2021 F1 season.

One of the best junior formula racers in history, Piastri won Formula Renault Eurocup, F3 and F2 (traditionally three last three stepping stones to F1) in successive seasons and was part of the Alpine Academy from the start of 2020 after his Eurocup success.

However, he couldn’t find a place on the F1 grid after winning F2 in his rookie year and was forced to sit out the 2022 season before Alpine looked to place him in the seat shockingly vacated by Fernando Alonso‘s move to Aston Martin.

They even announced the move but it transpired Piastri was free to investigate other openings on the grid and had signed with McLaren, which was upheld by F1‘s Contract Recognition Board.

Chris Piastri celebrates his son Oscar Piastri’s third place in qualifying for the 2023 British Grand Prix | Total-Motorsport

Things got ugly when Alpine team principal Otmar Szafnauer questioned Piastri‘s integrity, but Chris said the whole saga is ancient history to his son

“Honestly, that was so long ago I don’t think he even thinks about it now,” he added. “I think it’s in the past and that’s where it will stay.

“It’s been such a journey and such an effort from everybody involved with Oscar and after the year off and finally now it seems like the car’s going in the right direction for both the boys, I’m just super happy for both Oscar and Lando

“He’s over the moon to be at McLaren and I think the result of today speaks for itself. It’s hard to know because you kind of get a little bit of the back channel of information about where the team think they are.

“But I think everyone was surprised today pleasantly that there was a P2 and P3 in the car, I know everyone back in the factory is just, there’s so much motivation, everyone in this building here is just losing their mind right now.”

Adam Dickinson
Adam Dickinson
An international multi-award-winning journalist, Adam Dickinson has written for Total-Motorsport.com since June 2022 and also contributes to TNT Sports, Eurosport and the Rugby Paper. He's also had articles published in the Daily Telegraph and several local newspapers, and previously worked for Last-Lap.co.uk and FeederSeries.net in motorsport and graduated with a First-Class Journalism Degree from the University of Sheffield having also studied in Oklahoma. Adam started watching F1 by accident in 2007, catching the last race in Indianapolis, and attended his first race as a journalist at the 2023 British Grand Prix.
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