The McLaren pilot was a standout performer and quickly solidified his position on the grid for the long term – proving a match for his highly-rated team-mate, Lando Norris.
In this installment of his Speedcafe Q&A, Piastri looks back on the year and picks out his standout moments, while casting an eye into the future and a well-deserved summer holiday.
Looking back on 2023, did you achieve everything in your rookie season you'd hoped to?
“I'd say that I am satisfied with how my rookie season has gone. I'm happy with how I progressed throughout the year, I enjoyed it a lot and had some amazing highlights like the podiums and sprint win in Qatar.
“It's been a huge learning curve and there are still plenty of things to work on looking ahead to next year but overall, I think I've laid some good foundations in 2023.
“Hopefully, we can pick up where we left off in 2024.”
What's been your standout moment of the season?
“I think it has to be the Qatar weekend. Taking sprint pole and the sprint win and then following it up the next day with another grand prix podium was fantastic. It was probably the hardest race that I've ever driven due to the conditions, but it rounded off a special few days.
“There have been quite a few highlights like taking second in the Spa sprint, narrowly missing out on a podium at Silverstone because of the safety car and my first GP podium at Japan but Qatar just tops it.”
With 24 races next season, what do you do in terms of preparation during the offseason, given you'll have no time once the year gets going!?
“First of all, it's definitely important to have a rest, unwind and recharge the batteries and so, I'll have a few weeks to myself to have a break and catch up with friends and family.
“I always keep the training ticking over but once I've had a break, it will then be about preparation for next year and getting in some good physical work. Most of that is done in pre-season with little pockets to top that up during the season itself.
“With more races next year, it is obviously even more crucial to get all the strength and conditioning requirements in shape before we get going in Bahrain.”
We know when pre-season testing and the season proper starts, but when do you start back for 2024?
“While having a rest and a bit of a breather, I always try and keep the training up during the off-season to a certain degree. I'd say that ramps up gradually as we go through January and into February before official F1 testing starts at the end of February.
“It's so important to get that physical conditioning right heading into the season as it's impossible to play catch up.”
How are you going to spend your time during the off-season? Will you do any sim racing or spend time in a kart? (Fan question, Matthew Knott)
“I will definitely do a bit of sim racing with my friends, and I hope to do a bit of karting back in Australia. It will just be for fun but it's good to keep the competitive juices flowing.
“Ask any F1 driver and they will say that they still love karting. The thrill of it is still the same and it immediately transports me back to those early years.”