Carlos Sainz comments on “solid” qualifying performance for the British Grand Prix

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Carlos Sainz reflects on what he deems a decent qualifying performance from Ferrari in difficult conditions, and lays out his predictions for tomorrow’s highly anticipated British Grand Prix.

Carlos Sainz on track at Slverstone for the 2023 British Grand Prix
Photo: @ScuderiaFerrari on twitter

Ferrari enjoyed a relatively strong qualifying session, with the team taking P4 and P5 for tomorrow’s race just marginally behind the resurgent McLaren’s, despite the challenging conditions presented during the session. The rapidly drying track saw times tumble right at the death of Q3, with Ferrari timing their laps well to secure a strong starting position for tomorrow’s Grand Prix.

“The competition was a bit stronger today…”

Carlos Sainz seemed pleased following the session in which he finished P5 and just 0.012s behind teammate Leclerc. When asked how he felt the session had gone, Sainz claims it was overall decent for the team, a fair response as they finished just over a tenth of a second behind both McLaren driver’s in an incredibly competitive session.

“Not bad.” Sainz replied. “I think it was overall a decent quali. Just the competition was a bit stronger today to be on the front row or in the top three. But we had a decent quali again in very mixed, changing conditions, very tricky out there. But yeah, we had a solid quali.”

“Hopefully we can pass them.”

When asked about his expectations for tomorrow’s Grand Prix, Sainz admits he sees a strong performance from Mercedes on the table. He expects Mercedes to have stronger race pace than both Ferrari as well as the McLarens ahead and so predicts pressure to come from behind during the Grand Prix.

Despite his worries at the pace of the Mercedes cars starting behind, Sainz expects to be able to challenge the two McLaren drivers, Piastri and Norris, ahead during the race, noting the tyre degradation issues which McLaren seem to suffer from on longer runs.

“I think it’s going to be an interesting race.” He said. “I think the faster race pace is Red Bull and Mercedes than [Ferrari] and McLaren. So I think it’s going to be Mercedes putting pressure on both of us at some point tomorrow, so it’s going to be a tricky race for all.

“Yes I think we should!” He replied enthusiastically when asked if he believes Ferrari can challenge McLaren tomorrow. “I think they struggle with deg like we do, but hopefully we can pass them.”

With no rain forecast for the track tomorrow to interfere with the Grand Prix, conditions should allow for a close fight between Ferrari, McLaren and the predicted charging Mercedes behind as Ferrari aim to secure a second consecutive podium.