For Scuderia Ferrari driver Carlos Sainz, the Italian Grand Prix weekend was made more difficult due to a crash in the second free practice session at Monza, with just a few hours before the start of the Sprint Qualifying: the Spanish driver lost control of his Ferrari SF21 car in the middle of the fast Variante Ascari combination, spinning off the track on the inside and making hard head-on contact with the wall, which ended his FP2 session prematurely.
Unfortunately for Carlos, it was his third crash in four race weekends after going off in qualifying for the Hungarian Grand Prix before the summer break, and then suffering a shunt last weekend in practice for the Dutch Grand Prix at Zandvoort. Carlos Sainz, who admitted he “needed to rebuild his confidence” after what he called a “massive crash” on Saturday morning, said he still doesn’t have an explanation for what happened.
“It’s clearly an accident that I should have avoided, it’s an accident that I still don’t understand and I don’t have an explanation for,” he said in Sunday night after securing sixth – “The car has been very neutral in Ascari across the whole weekend, and I’ve been struggling a lot with the balance there. I guess I’m still going through a bit of a learning process understanding the car. The car seems to be also quite neutral in the mid corner and I need to be careful when I go on throttle.” – the Spanish driver explained.
When asked whether there is any connection with his previous two crashes, Carlos Sainz replied: “I think there are three separate accidents with three separate causes. I think I already explained that in Zandvoort I went a bit offline and lost the car, and it was a very driver mistake. In Budapest I pretty much I’m pretty sure that I got one of the biggest gusts of winds that I had in a race car in my life.” – he added.
While Carlos admits that he is still learning how to get the most out of his SF21 car, the Spanish driver has been praised for his quick adaptation to the Maranello team, after making the move from McLaren before the start of the 2021 Formula 1 championship.
Carlos Sainz is seventh in the drivers’ standings after the Italian Grand Prix, just 6.5 points behind established teammate Charles Leclerc, and was able to score two podium finishes for the Maranello team this season. Yet his Zandvoort and Monza crashes come after Ferrari team boss Mattia Binotto expressed his hope of seeing the Spaniard to put together entire error-free grand prix weekends during the second half of the 2021 season, with Carlos Sainz adamant “it will not happen again anytime soon”.
“It’s not ideal, because I cost the mechanics and the team a few too many repairs lately, but I’m sure it will not happen again anytime soon and I will recover from it. But yes, something to learn from and something that I need to keep investigating and trying to learn from because it’s not ideal.” – Carlos concluded.