Carlos Sainz expects he will have a hard time during the race with Max Verstappen behind him. The Ferrari car has found the right balance over one lap this weekend, but Sainz is wary of the Red Bull Racing car’s race speed. In addition, the Ferrari driver must also pay attention to the delta that the race management had imposed on the drivers during qualifying. Sainz was not penalized for not respecting this delta and he also has an explanation for why he had to slow down.
Sainz has been looking fast all weekend at Monza, having also consistently proved faster than Charles Leclerc. The Spaniard feels very happy in the SF-23. “I think our efficiency is very good. Since we put the car on track in first practice, it just felt completely different to Zandvoort,” the Ferrari driver said in the press conference. “I had a really good balance. It gave me a lot of confidence in sector 2, the Ascari chicane and Parabolica, and I think that’s where I could make the biggest difference when it came down to it by taking a little more risk.’
However, the question is whether Ferrari will also have the faster car on Sunday. After all, Verstappen, who is allowed to start from P2, has confidence in the race setup of his RB19. “That Red Bull, once you’ve had five or six laps on the tire and they degrade a little bit, that’s where their strength is. But hopefully I have one and I can make the lives of Max, Checo (Sergio Pérez, ed.) And Charles as difficult as possible. We have to work well together. I think we have a good chance, but the Red Bull should be faster. We’re just going to try to make their lives as complicated as possible and try to get the win.”
Sainz explains driving slower
Sainz’s pole position and Leclerc’s third place seemed to be in danger. The Ferrari drivers drove too slowly during an in-lap, so they did not meet the maximum time set by the FIA. Sainz can explain why he drove slower. “I had to slow down so much so as not to interfere with other cars doing their fastest laps that it was almost impossible to respect the delta. Had I respected it, I would have hindered my competitors. So I preferred to play it safe and chose not to interfere with anyone,” said the pole sitter.
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