Fresh from second place – not without some regrets – in Monte-Carlo and from the disappointing eighth place in Baku, Carlos Sainz he hopes to get off to a good start on the first seasonal triptych of consecutive races, which will take the riders first to France, to Paul Ricard, and then to Austria for two consecutive races on the Red Bull Ring circuit. Speaking on the eve of the French weekend, the Ferrari driver looked confident. Of course, the street circuits – on which Ferrari flew above all in qualifying – are now behind us. The red car, however, has already shown that it can in other ‘traditional’ tracks compete on par with McLaren, main opponent in the race for third place among the constructors.
Sainz: “Challenging Leclerc is one of the reasons I’m here”
Interviewed by the Spanish site AS, Sainz tried to do some weekend forecast waiting for the Cavallino stable. “Fighting for the pole? Absolutely not – explained smiling – just turn around to see the type of circuit we are in. In Barcelona we were six or seven tenths behind. It is good news that the car was fast in Baku and Munich. We can warm up the tires and be quick in a single lap, but in the race it’s different and it’s more difficult for us. The race shows better what level everyone is at“. Sainz’s level, on the other hand, is probably the highest among the drivers who have changed teams over the winter.
The chameleon Sainz
The man from Madrid, however, is convinced that he can grow further: “These first six races have gone quite well in terms of adaptation – recognized – It gives me confidence to see how I have adapted to a team like Ferrari. But I feel far from being the best driver I can be, from the level I was at McLaren. Although I have adapted quickly, I am still not at that level. I need to be able to put the whole weekend together. I’ve had races where I didn’t qualify so well and then I had a good first lap and a good strategy. But I didn’t have the perfect weekend, I’d like to have it soon “ the Ferrari driver explained.
The expectations for the French GP, however, they are high: “The goal is to be right behind Red Bull and Mercedes and I’d like to be the first in that group” Sainz concluded.