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In recent races, Ferrari has come under fire for making strategic decisions that have cost it big results. Some examples of these decisions include the decision to not change Charles Leclerc’s used tyres during the final safety car period of the British Grand Prix and the pit blunder that cost him the victory in Monaco.
Sainz thinks criticism of Ferrari’s F1 strategy “unfair”
However, in order to counteract Red Bull’s top speed advantage over the Scuderia along the back straight at Paul Ricard on Saturday, Ferrari put into action a pre-weekend plan that called for Leclerc to use Sainz as a tow vehicle in the third qualifying round.
The strategy was a success, as Charles Leclerc beat Max Verstappen to first place in the race by a margin of 0.304 seconds to take pole position. Leclerc did confess that Ferrari made a mistake on the opening lap of Q3 though.
Sainz, who will begin the race from the back of the grid owing to a change in the components of the power unit, believes that Ferrari’s qualifying strategies demonstrated how “solid” the squad is strategically.
Sainz stated, “I think we’ve had quite a lot of criticism on the strategy front,” and I agree with him.
“And I believe it’s a bit unfair because this season, every team is going to make mistakes with tyres, choosing tyres, and everything else,” you said. “Every team is going to make mistakes.”
However, I believe that the squad has been very strong strategically throughout this season, and I believe that today is evidence of that.
“Also, the relationship with Charles and the way the team works, in my opinion, is just another piece of evidence that demonstrates how well it is functioning and how well we are working together.
It’s great to see you again. I believe that you ought to acknowledge to both us and Ferrari that the day went extremely well for all of us.”
At Paul Ricard, Ferrari made the decision to accept the grid penalty that would have been imposed on it so that it could still provide Sainz with possibilities to make a strong recovery through the field.
Sainz gave the following response when asked about an acceptable level for the race: “I don’t have a reference, and especially considering that we still have half the season left, and with the way that I’m performing on track right now, with how fast I was in Q2, how fast I was in Austria, and in Silverstone, I think it’s not worth thinking about this.”
“I will keep thinking about what I’ve been thinking about recently, which is to get myself back up to speed to the level that I was at the previous year, and I think that today indicates that I’m getting there and that I will surely go for it until the team says [otherwise].”
“But for me, with half the season left and everything that has happened in the first half, there are still [options],” the speaker said. “[Options]”