Zhou explains ‘frightening’ Monaco stoppage that led to new radio call over pants

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Alfa Romeo driver Zhou started his first Monaco Grand Prix from last place on the grid after failing to get a lap after the red flag in Q1 but climbed to 14th in the opening stages.

Zhou fell back to 16th after the red flag stoppage for Mick Schumacher’s crash, and found himself struggling to make a pass on AlphaTauri driver Tsunoda.

After approaching the tunnel, Zhou moved to the left side of the track to try to overtake on the inside in the New Chicane, only to have his car contract under him and send him into a slide.

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Zhou brilliantly managed to catch the car and avoid crashing before quickly joking over the team radio, “I need new pants after this!”

The Chinese driver explained that he considered this to be his best opportunity to get ahead of Tsunoda, but hit a wet spot that almost caused him to lose the car.

“It was very humid inside, and there’s not a lot of wake you can get,” Zhou said.

“It was probably one of the closest rounds behind Yuki, so I really had to dive inside at the last minute.

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“Unfortunately he tried to cover a bit, and at that point I tried to avoid that and hit the wet spot. It was just a matter of keeping the car on track there- down.

The mistake allowed Nicholas Latifi to gain a position, but Zhou felt it didn’t really matter because “at least I tried to take a position”.

Zhou Guanyu, Alfa Romeo

Photo by: Alfa Romeo

Speaking about the save itself, Zhou said, “It wasn’t too cool in the cockpit, it was pretty scary, sketchy moment. But it will be nice to take a look at the replay.

Sunday marked Zhou’s first time driving an F1 car in Monaco, having only sampled the street circuit in Formula 2 machines.

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He admitted it was “so different” trying to manage an F1 car on the track, and that experience and confidence were important to gain.

“It was a bit lacking, but obviously we shouldn’t start last, just because of the red flag and no lap time yesterday,” Zhou said.

“It was tough, I think one of the toughest, but we all experienced different conditions.

“I guess normal wet race tracks will be a bit better now after experiencing Monaco.”

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