F1 rookie Piastri has been one of the stars of the 2023 season and is already guaranteed to finish inside the top-10 of the drivers’ championship, with him currently holding ninth heading into this weekend’s Abu Dhabi finale.
While the 22-year-old Australian has impressed with several superb performances this year, he clashed with Lewis Hamilton for the second time this season during the Las Vegas Grand Prix, on his way to salvaging 10th.
Brundle believes being slightly incident-prone may be one of Piastri’s only weaknesses but backed him to overcome that with time.
“Oscar Piastri scored fastest lap and had a super-aggressive drive from his lowly grid position,” Brundle wrote in his latest column for Sky.
“He perhaps gets involved in too many skirmishes, this time a racing incident with Hamilton, but when he adds better control and judgement to his speed given more experience, he’ll be mighty.”
Brundle also gave his verdict on the penalty handed to race-winner Max Verstappen for forcing Charles Leclerc wide at Turn 1 at the start.
“Quite how Verstappen from that dusty side of the grid out-dragged Leclerc’s Ferrari in the very short run to turn one I don’t know, but they arrived wheel to wheel with Max on the inside,” he wrote.
“The rules state that if your front axle is level or ahead of your rival’s front axle at the apex – not always an easy point to define in a long corner – then you have earned the right to space and a legitimate overtake. But you have to keep control of your car and stay on track, which Max didn’t, taking the Ferrari with him.
“Like Leclerc and Ferrari most of us assumed Max would have to give the place back, but in fact he received a five-second penalty. In normal circumstances, and already with a two-second lead, you’d have to say that was lenient.
“But in fact, the way it played out, with Leclerc catching and repassing him anyway, and a safety car for Lando Norris’s worryingly heavy shunt, his first retirement since Brazil last year, adding five seconds to Max’s pit stop put him quite a long way back in the pack.”
Summarising the race, Brundle continued: “There was contact aplenty even for the eventual winner Verstappen who made such an audacious move on George Russell that the Mercedes driver was only concentrating on controlling his own car and had no idea the Red Bull was on the inside.
“Russell would take a not-unreasonable five-second penalty which would spoil his great drive to fourth place and turn it into eighth, such was the proximity of the pack. A season full of promise but even more of frustration for George.
“For the second time in the last two races Perez would lose a place on the last lap as the ‘never say die’ Leclerc, quite rightly voted driver of the day, made a lunge to brilliantly pass him three corners from home. Perez would however cement second place in the standings for Red Bull’s first ever one-two in the drivers’ championship.”