It was a bitter Dutch Grand Prix for Scuderia Ferrari: Charles Leclerc ended the race on the third step of the podium after having the better of Lewis Hamilton in the final stages of the Zandvoort event, while Carlos Sainz, who seemed to be more in difficulty with his F1-75 car, after having crossed the line in fifth position was relegated to eighth place following a 5 ” penalty for a controversial unsafe release.
The two drivers of the Scuderia, who started respectively from the second and third place on the grid, were never been able trully worry Max Verstappen and Red Bull this weekend. Ferrari thought it would be able to fight with the world champion in the race, especially in light of the minimum gaps in qualifying, but today the story was completely different.
And Mattia Binotto admitted the disappointment for an unexpected result: the Ferrari team principal, speaking in front of the microphones of Sky Sport F1 HD, admitted that the F1-75 in the Netherlands showed evident gaps in terms of pace.
“Today we are certainly not satisfied. We lacked the pace and we haven’t been fast enough for a few races. We need to understand why, because when you are struggling with the pace then it is inevitable that the result does not live up to expectations. For the third race in a row for one reason or another we weren’t fast and that’s what we have to try to understand.” – he said after the Dutch Grand Prix.
Mattia Binotto then explained what happened in the pits during Carlos Sainz’s first stop. When the Spaniard entered the pit lane, the mechanics weren’t ready with medium tires and the wait in the pits seemed endless for the Spanish driver.
“There was a mess during Carlos’s pit” – Mattia Binotto admitted – “The call came when Carlos was in the last corner and when he entered the mechanics did not have time to be ready. We wanted to react to Hamilton because it was right to do so, but the call was late. These are things that can happen and we must learn from these episodes moments.”
The Spaniard’s last stop was similarly chaotic, but not due to the mechanics’ demerits. Carlos, in fact, had to brake to avoid hitting a McLaren mechanic working in Lando Norris’ pit and in that context he risked being hit by Fernando Alonso.
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Race control was adamant in evaluating this episode as an unsafe release and Mattia Binotto openly criticized Carlos Sainz’s penalty.
“We are sorry for the penalty that Carlos Sainz received. From our point of view, there was no unsafe release and we find the FIA’s decision very strict. We held him down as the McLaren passed and let him go when there was space. He stopped to avoid hitting some McLaren mechanics who were moving around the car. This for me is not an unsafe release ”.