- Charles Leclerc, Carlos Sainz [Copyright: Ferrari]

Sainz does not care his championship position seeing long-term view

The Spaniard is leading his teammate by half a point.

6w ago

Carlos Sainz talks about enjoying the battle with Charles Leclerc at Ferrari, where he is not bothered about his finishing position.

When it was announced in 2020, that Sainz was signing for Ferrari, he surely had some semblance of second thoughts. It was a very trying season for the Maranello concern so much so that with McLaren out performing Ferrari by 71 points, it’s not inconceivable that the Spaniard would have been a touch uneasy about his move.

However, it has been good. Ferrari are on the up and Sainz has had a consistent season with 14 points finishes including three podiums to Leclerc’s one. The gap between the two drivers is half a point with six races remaining and both have had tough moments. The Spaniard has been there or thereabouts almost every time he has raced hence his finishing record and ditto for Leclerc.

As a result, the two protagonists are looking for bigger things than just being around the middle of the points scoring. Leclerc is a past GP winner, while Sainz is chasing win number one. This year is a slight learning curve and step back up towards the top after 2020.  As per above, both the Ferrari drivers have been “there” almost all the time.

They have had some issues this year, particularly around tyres, but overall it has been a positive step. Next years target is to match Red Bull and Mercedes more regularly. For Sainz himself, he seems happy with life there just now and not worry about the championship position, as he heads the Monegasque by half a point.

"It's obviously a good sign that I'm there or thereabouts," said Sainz. "I still feel like I'm half a step behind from where I want to be, in terms of being the one scoring points consistently and maximising my chances. But it's a good sign that whenever there's been a podium opportunity I've also been able to grab it.

"To be honest this year if there's a year that I don't care too much about the championship position it's this year, especially with Ferrari. We're not here to finish sixth and seventh, we're here to achieve bigger things as a team. And trust me when I say that neither Charles nor I care that much if it's sixth or seventh.

"What we are working really hard at is to try and understand the issues that we had for example in Sochi, and in other races to make sure that if next year we're fighting for the lead of the championship, we don't have these issues on tyre management or things like that. But it's a good sign as I said before, and it's been a fair battle so far.

"And I'm actually enjoying also sharing data with him, and seeing where he's the stronger and all that," summed up Sainz. The Spaniard has not only been good with Leclerc, but also on good terms with Lando Norris last season too. Teammates getting on might be rare but it is refreshing and the battle with McLaren for third remains intriguing.

The story was written by Neil Farrell

[Image courtesy: Ferrari] [Note: This story was written on FormulaRapida.net]

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