Pierre Gasly has been enthused by Honda’s power unit update taken at the Russian Grand Prix but is eager for it to be fine-tuned ahead of its home race at Suzuka this weekend.

Despite seeing Toro Rosso's Russian race ended after just four laps by brake problems for both Gasly and Brendon Hartley, the French driver was positive about the performance gained from Honda’s updated power unit.

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Toro Rosso opted to take a completely new power unit for both drivers for the Sochi race, with the aim of avoiding back of the gird penalties for Honda’s home race, and Gasly has encouraged his team to ‘extract everything’ from the updated engine in time for Suzuka.

“We can see with the upgrade we can now fight for the top ten, so this is a clear performance gain,” Gasly said. “How much we don’t know exactly, we need to get more mileage and fine tune the engine in order to extract everything, but for a first day using it it’s positive.

“Obviously every time you run a new engine on the track it’s a bit different than on the dyno. Things happen different with the engine so it’s really in the mapping that they can do better but there’s no real big area they need to improve. It more about extracting more in Suzuka and for the rest of the season.”

Toro Rosso team boss Franz Tost has echoed his driver’s comments ahead of his squad’s debut ‘home’ race as Honda engine partners and is keen to demonstrate the gains in front of the Japanese manufacturer’s home crowd.

“The positive side of this weekend is Honda’s new upgraded engine which is a big improvement,” Tost said. “Now we are focussing on preparing everything for Suzuka where we hopefully will have a much better race.”

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