Carlos Sainz feels more like at home with the Ferrari F1 car now in the fag end of the 2023 season than what he did at the start.
The last few races has been certainly strong for Ferrari’s Sainz, who not only scored his first podium of the F1 2023 season but also registered a race win. He became the only non Red Bull driver so far to take the top spot in the first chance they got.
Sainz has been on song from the get go in race weekends off late, something which teammate Charles Leclerc has acknowledged too along with team boss Frederic Vasseur. The Monegasque noted about changes on the car which has suited the Spaniard more.
Sainz himself has felt more comfortable in the car to be on pace from FP1 onward and be more consistent with his lap times throughout the weekend. He feels in a better place now than what he was at the start of the 2023 F1 season.
“I’m not sure I’ve definitely felt good the last few races in the car,” said Sainz. “Yeah, we are starting to understand it a lot better and making sure that we put the car in the right place in FP1 and it gives you confidence and it’s an easier build up. But yeah, this year I feel like I understand the car a lot better and I’m driving better than last year.
“It’s just maybe the last two-three weekends I’ve managed to put everything together a bit more and it shows in the results. But the driving and the comfort in the car is good and now, hopefully in the second half of the season, my target was to be more consistent and just nail more results, nail more weekends.
“As I said, I think now I feel more at one with the car since the beginning of the season, really. It’s not like something’s changed recently. It’s just maybe just putting the weekend together has been a bit more the case but I feel at one with the car from the beginning of the season while last year that wasn’t the case and I had to change quite a bit of things with my driving and adapting and tuning a bit the car to my liking,” summed up Sainz.
Ferrari too has had an upswing in performances especially since the Zandvoort weekend where Vasseur noted about trials undertaken during practice session on the downforce side. Both the drivers too feel that the things they tried has worked to a certain extent.
“We did actually learn some very interesting stuff about how our car performs in that sort of track and what our high downforce wings are doing and yet in some other cases they don’t work as well as we like and that’s why we’re changing a lot the package race-to-race, but honestly, I think it’s a much bigger thing than just the rear wing and it’s more a car characteristic thing,” stated Sainz.
Here’s Carlos Sainz and Charles Leclerc about Japan