Sargeant aims to “eradicate” mistakes after bittersweet F1 Dutch GP weekend

Spread the love

While Alex Albon has been impressing with his performances as the senior driver at Williams, rookie teammate Logan Sargeant has come under scrutiny for being error-prone.

It seems the grace period for a rookie cutting their teeth in Formula 1 keeps shrinking. After the Red Bull bosses decided to oust Nyck de Vries mid-season in favour of veteran Daniel Ricciardo, the attention turned to Williams’ American rookie.

Now, the pressure is on Sargeant to use the remaining rounds to prove he deserves to retain his seat for 2024.

Photo credit: Williams Racing

He got off to a good start at the first post-summer break race at Zandvoort by managing to make it into Q3 along with teammate Alex Albon—a career first for Sargeant. But the feat was quickly overshadowed by the crash that saw him end up in the wall at Turn 2 after hitting a damp spot on the track in the first few minutes of the session.

Sunday wouldn’t prove very merciful either, as another crash triggered an early exit out of the race for Sargeant. Although the root of the incident was later confirmed to be a hydraulic issue on the car, the driver’s disappointment at what was his second crash of the weekend was evident.

Speaking to the media ahead of the Italian Grand Prix, Sargeant shared his thoughts on the tricky weekend at Zandvoort.

“Yeah, it was a tough race, of course. (…) It was tricky, slicks in the wet, just wanted to try and avoid any mistakes after Saturday.”

Asked about finding a balance between being cautious and needing to push to extract the maximum potential out of himself and the car, Sargeant said, “It comes down to experience as well as just being measured. I think, for me, obviously Sunday was what it was, but on Saturday I think it was just… I slightly misjudged the situation.

“I need to understand why it was slightly misjudged—which I think I do—it was as tricky as conditions get, there was barely a dry line for one car, on a track that’s unforgiving… So yeah, next time, for sure I’ll leave a little bit more margin for error.”

Sargeant added that he’s feeling the support within the team and explained that he doesn’t tend to dwell on his past mistakes as a new race weekend approaches.

“Obviously, it’s a terrible feeling. I mean mainly for the damage—every individual helped get the car ready for Sunday and just to have it undone is terrible. James [Vowles] has been there to support me since the start, he’s still there to support me, and just keep giving me good advice, keep helping me move in the right direction.

“It’s not an ideal situation, but at the end of the day you have to put it in a box, close it, take the learnings from it and just get rid of it.

“I have to make sure I’m not thinking about last weekend into this one because that will just affect you in a negative way. So it’s about compartmentalising that, putting it to bed to go at it again.”

Speaking about his goals for the remainder of the season, Sargeant vowed to work on ironing out his mistakes and focusing on delivering when it matters.

“I think eradicate those small mistakes that end up being costly. It’s clear I have to get rid of those—I know I have to get rid of those. But at the same time I personally see myself making a lot of progress.

“If I can get rid of those and keep delivering qualifying laps when I need to, I will put myself in a much better window and give myself more opportunity to fight for points and put the car where it can be.”