Carlos Sainz recalls his radio moment of discussing strategy with Ferrari pitwall in F1 Hungarian GP, as he reckons he lost time early in the race which hampered win chance.
Ferrari’s Sainz had a fighting race in F1 Hungarian GP, after his teammate crashed out on Lap 1, leaving him with all the pressure to bring home some points. The Spaniard finished fourth but got third after Sebastian Vettel’s disqualification (pending), although he stated that he should have gone for the win.
When asked about the start, Sainz said he felt fine about it, but noted that the re-start didn’t go as per plans after he stayed behind Nicholas Latifi and Yuki Tsunoda, which gave him a larger gap to push for the potential win after he passed them.
“The start was mega, obviously, from 15th to fourth was the best possible outcome for us after that first lap,” said Sainz to TV media. “After re-start, when we all decided to pit for the slicks, I got jumped at the pitstop by Tsunoda and Latifi, which is something we have to know and have to understand why because it made us lose a lot of time, something like 15s to the leaders for the first 20 laps.
“We lost the fight for the win and potentially the podium because then it made us vulnerable to Lewis coming from behind. We managed to overcut them pretty easily – Tsunoda and Latifi – and from then Lewis did a very good job to be honest, he made us push a lot on the hard tyre at the beginning of the stint which meant towards the end of the stint I degraded more, I also had to do a lot of fuel saving in the last few laps.
“Ricciardo didn’t make our lives very easy there with the blue flag and this opened the door to Lewis to overtake,” summed up Sainz. As it turned out, looks like Hamilton and Fernando Alonso were not the only one who was held up for a potential win. In totality, the circumstances seemed to have made it impossible for Ferrari to go for the win, after being held up consistently by other drivers.
In fact, had it not been for the hold up, Sainz felt that he would be able to fight for the win. The grand prix saw the Spaniard involved in action all-through, even on radio with regards to the pit stop. The team wanted to pit early but he requested to let him drive in free air and build up enough gap, which was crucial.
“I was trying to read a bit through the race and to see how on earth we were gonna manage to finish in front of Lewis for that podium,” started Sainz. “In the end he did what I was expecting him to do which is what he’s done here the last two years, box for a first tyre and then come back through the field, as he has the car with that capacity to overtake, we don’t.
“So, we couldn’t decided not to cover him, but I think we did more or less all the right calls, We just need to understand how we lost the position to Tsunoda and Latifi, because we went from from third theoretical to fifth and this here we lost a lot race time for sure,” explained Sainz.
Having lost out early on, Sainz struggled to make up time to get to second place. After Hamilton passed Alonso to gain fourth position, the battle against the Spaniard was an easy win. According to the Ferrari driver, if the hold up in the beginning of the race was not as prominent, his battle with the Brit would have never happened, and he would have fought for the win.
The article was written by Neeladri Nag
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