How soon can Ferrari close the gap to the front? Carlos Sainz answers
Carlos Sainz believes that Ferrari will be bringing upgrades for their car soon, but was not ready to reveal the exact time.
The Spanish driver believes they have identified their performance weaknesses and is positive the car upgrades in the pipeline could turn around their performance and season ahead.
Asked by Sportskeeda how soon Ferrari could turn around their performance woes, Carlos Sainz replied:
“It’s a good question, we know already our performance timings more or less, our developments. I cannot reveal right now because it would not be the right thing for me or my team. But we know when they are coming we know what they are targeting and we know that they should help."
"Because I said it’s clear the weaknesses we have. I think honestly the last stint on the hard, I was pushing flat out, Charles was pushing flat out behind me and we just couldn’t keep up and this is the true picture.”
Without revealing the timeline for their upgrades or when they could turn around their performance woes, Carlos Sainz claimed Ferrari know their weaknesses and will bring the needful upgrades to sort it out. Sainz cited that there were many areas the car was struggling, but they had a clear idea of where the car needed to be developed.
He claimed they faced a similar problem in the wind tunnel as well, which made it easier for them to bring solutions. Heading into the weekend expecting their car to be second fastest, the drop in performance surprised the Spanish driver.
Asked where they have taken a step back, Carlos Sainz explained:
“We know where it is, we identified it already in Bahrain. The thing the car is doing exactly the same as in the wind tunnel. So we know where the weakness is in the wind tunnel and where the weakness is here. We know where to develop the car, we just need time."
"Because from the weakness we saw in Bahrain and that we see here, obviously we cannot do this (snaps a finger) and bring upgrades soon tomorrow. But I’m positive that this team is capable of bringing them early in the season and this could completely change our season . So heads down and time to work hard.”
Carlos Sainz was surprised with Ferrari’s lack of pace during the Saudi Arabian GP
Surprised by the degradation on their tires compared to Mercedes and Aston Martin, Carlos Sainz revealed that their tires were overheating in clean air and were worse in dirty air. He revealed that it was difficult to follow a car ahead without losing performance and overheating their tires.
Commenting on his race pace and performance, the Carlos Sainz said:
“Honestly, it wasn’t the best timing because we were out there on the mediums overcutting Stroll and starting to show a bit of our better pace, after struggling a lot in dirty air behind Stroll."
"But I honestly think the result wouldn’t have changed much because I think the last stint in the hard proves that we are not where we want to be. That we still deg more than the Mercs, more than the Aston’s and we lack a bit of race pace.”
Summarizing their struggles and lack of performance, Carlos Sainz said:
“A bit surprised because after Friday and before the weekend I thought the we had a chance of being the second force here in Jeddah. But I think the last stint on the hards proves that we still have a lot of work to do, that we have a weakness in the race and that we wait for the developments to come so that we need to improve that weakness."
"Right now we are not where we want to be in terms of race pace, in terms of car in general, balance, even when we are following (car ahead). We just struggle a bit and if we overheat the tyres in clean air imagine when “A bit surprised because after Friday and before the weekend I thought the we had a chance of being the second force here in Jeddah."
"But I think the last stint on the hards proves that we still have a lot of work to do, that we have a weakness in the race and that we wait for the developments to come so that we need to improve that weakness.. Right now we are not where we want to be in terms of race pace, in terms of car in general, balance, even when we are following (car ahead)."
"We just struggle a bit and if we overheat the tyres in clean air imagine when following. We just keep them alive and we need clean air to produce some kind of decent lap times. We know exactly our weaknesses, this is a positive. Obviously we cannot do magic to bring the developments early but I know the team is working flat out to bring them. And this will improve our race pace for sure.”
Finishing sixth in the race, Carlos Sainz led his teammate Charles Leclerc, who finished seventh. However, the Ferrari duo were far off from rivals such as Mercedes and Aston Martin. With their work cutout ahead, the team is expected to bring a few upgrades to Australia and Azerbaijan. It will be interesting to see where they add to the mix at the front and turnaround their performance woes.