Scuderia Ferrari Spanish driver Carlos Sainz admitted that he has not got a handle on the 2022-generation of Formula 1 car designed by Ferrari for the current campaign just yet.
The F1-75 has a pointy front end which is not ideal for his driving style. Carlos Sainz is working alongside the Maranello technicians to find a way around this issue, it is a rather difficult task to change your style to suit a car. The Spanish driver has been making gains, though, and at the same time, Ferrari is working on some updates on the F1-75 car for the second part of the season which should also help him get a better feeling with the Maranello team’s challenger.
“I just need to be a bit quicker,” the Spanish driver admitted, in an interview for Formula1.com outside the Ferrari hospitality. “I need one or two tenths, in terms of qualifying and race pace. If I find those one or two tenths I found in the second half of last year with last year’s car, the earlier I find them, the earlier the win will come. I’ve been working hard to find them.” – he added.
“You can see from the cameras and everywhere that I’m not there yet with the car compared to last year, that I’m not driving naturally; the car is a bit too pointy for my liking but that’s it, that’s the way it goes,” says Sainz. “You can either adapt yourself or bring your car a bit more to your liking. Anyway, these two things, they take time, and they take knowledge and experience. It takes mistakes and trial and error, and this is what I’m in the process [of doing] now and what I’m going to try and correct as soon as possible.” – Carlos Sainz continued.
Ferrari Team Principal Mattia Binotto remains confident about Carlos Sainz’s progress and believes he will soom be able to challenge for race wins just like his teammate Charles Leclerc. The Ferrari boss has seen enough from the Spaniard’s time at alongside the Maranello team since the start of the 2021 Formula One championship to know that it’s a matter of when, not if, the 27-year-old finds his consistency.
This is also why Ferrari has offered Carlos a contract extension for two more years, a deal which was officially confirmed before the Imola race a few weeks ago:
“Carlos is struggling, but he will get there very soon I’m sure,” he said. “I am sure he will get there at some stage because that’s the attitude of Carlos – studying the data, trying different driving styles, adapting himself. He will maybe take a bit of time, but he will get there. I don’t think that there are issues. Certainly, he needs to adapt by seeing that he has done a couple of mistakes, which are important. But nevertheless, I think that he is improving himself, he is going faster and faster.” – he added.
One other key aspect is that fact that the F1-75 is actually the first car driven by Carlos Sainz which has the potential to fight for race victories and challenging for the Formula 1 world titles. And it is not an easy task to adjust to such a situation, which was clearly vizibile also in the case of Sergio Perez in 2021: the Red Bull driver needed one year to get comfortable before stepping it up in the current championship. And Mattia Binotto appreciates that it will take time. “It’s maybe the first time in his career that he’s got a car which is fast enough to compete for the best positions, and he simply need to get used to that – but he will do it very quickly, because I know how smart and how capable he is to manage the pressure,” he said.
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Carlos Sainz is loving the opportunity to test himself at the sharp end on a regular basis. “I’m enjoying it, it’s a whole new experience; you need to drive a bit differently. It’s a different scenario I’m getting used to. I’m racing against two or three guys who have been at the front before. For me, it’s the first time, my first six or seven races having a competitive car – and I’ve learned a lot that I’m going to apply for the rest of the season. Plenty of races left, a long time to go, so everything to play for. As soon as I do these adaptations and find my feeling with the car, there are good things to come for sure.” – the Spanish driver concluded.