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Piastri loses grip on late podium in Canada

Matt Clayton
Monday, 10 June 2024

Oscar Piastri looked on track for a second straight podium finish inside the last 10 laps in Montreal, but couldn’t hold off Mercedes teammates George Russell and Lewis Hamilton on fresher tyres as he fell to fifth at the chequered flag.

Oscar Piastri admitted to “a few frustrations” after a late-race chance of a podium finish in Sunday’s Canadian Grand Prix went begging, the McLaren driver falling from third with six laps to go to finish fifth in a chaotic wet-dry race in Montreal.

Piastri, who started from fourth on the grid, spent 50 of the 70 laps in that same position behind front-running trio Max Verstappen (Red Bull Racing), George Russell (Mercedes) and teammate Lando Norris, all of whom led at various stages.


A safety car with 16 laps left saw Piastri inherit third when Russell and teammate Lewis Hamilton pitted for new tyres, but the Australian wasn’t able to hold either Mercedes driver off in the closing laps with fading rubber, eventually finishing 10.199secs behind race-winner Verstappen.

“Definitely a few frustrations,” he said after his first points in Montreal in his second Canadian outing.

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“I don’t know if the result would have necessarily been any different, but there were a few things in the race where I think we could have given ourselves a better chance of a better result. Some of those on me, some of those on the team, so I think we need to analyse it altogether.

“On a weekend where it could have gone very, very wrong, to come out with this many points as a team is a great result. But we’re always chasing perfection, so just a few things we could have done better … just very minor things that, in a race like that, could have made quite a bit of difference.”

Piastri lost third place to Hamilton on lap 65 after he’d made contact with Russell at the final chicane two laps earlier, Russell having to take to the escape road and being passed by Hamilton.

With far superior tyres, Russell then demoted Piastri another place with five laps left and overtook Hamilton with three laps to go, taking his first podium of the year after starting from pole.

“Obviously a very difficult chicane to go two-wide through, but I think for me he got past and was quicker at that stage so I don’t think it changed the result,” Piastri said of his scrap with Russell in conditions he described as “very tricky” and required a post-race meeting with the stewards.

“One half of the track was completely dry, but Turn 1, Turn 2 and especially the pit exit was still pretty wet, so you had to remind yourself every time you came into Turn 1 that it was wet. So, very tough. Those sort of conditions I enjoy – good fun – but it makes life very tough to try to get past people.”

Piastri’s fifth place – allied to a third second-place result of the season for Norris – gave McLaren its first points in Canada for 10 years, and ensured Piastri stayed in sixth place in the standings with 81 points on a weekend where fourth (Carlos Sainz, Ferrari) and fifth (Sergio Perez, Red Bull Racing) failed to finish, Piastri trailing that duo by 27 and 26 points respectively after nine of the 24 rounds.

Oscar Piastri at the Canadian Grand Prix

Oscar’s Canadian Grand Prix by the numbers

  • Qualified: 4th
  • Race: 5th
  • Fastest lap: 1min 16.247secs (5th), lap 65
  • Points this event: 10
  • Points this season: 81 (6th in world championship)