The battles on the track were undoubtedly a highlight of the recent Italian Grand Prix. Max Verstappen, Sergio Perez, Carlos Sainz, and Charles Leclerc thrilled the sea of red fans with intense duels for the top four positions throughout the race at Monza. Carlos Sainz, in particular, played a significant role in these battles, challenging both the Dutch champion and Checo, and eventually his Ferrari teammate Charles Leclerc.
In the first two duels, the Spaniard had to concede due to the significant performance gap between the RB19 and the SF-23. However, in the ‘red derby,’ he managed to outperform thr Monegasque driver.
Challenge for Second Place
Carlos Sainz’s duels didn’t end with the checkered flag. Right after the race, in the post-race area, Ferrari’s #55 was involved in an interesting discussion with Sergio Perez. The Mexican driver contested Carlos Sainz’s excessive aggression in his defensive moves during their direct battle for the second position. The Red Bull driver directly confronted the 28-year-old Spaniard about his tendency to make moves just before braking.
This behavior evidently didn’t sit well with Sergio Perez, and he pointed it out to Carlos Sainz in a conversation captured by F1 cameras before they stepped onto the podium.
However, Carlos Sainz held his ground, explaining to the Mexican the regulations and reminding him that the ban is related to movement “during” the braking phase, not before. The discussion ended with Carlos Sainz admitting that he had depleted his battery in the final stages of the duel. This, along with greater speed, likely aided Sergio Perez in making the decisive overtake six laps from the finish.
Perez: “You were moving late, huh [during braking]?”
Sainz: “I moved late but in time, Checo! I moved a bit.”
Perez: “You moved just before hitting the brakes.”
Sainz: “But not during braking. The rule says you can’t do it during braking. You know that, right?”
Sainz: “It doesn’t say ‘before.’ I was moving before braking, and then I went to brake.”
Sainz: “But you overtook me well.”
Perez: “You didn’t have any more battery, right?”