May 13, 2017

Carlos Sainz feels a “step-forward” with P9 in Free Practice 3 at Spanish GP

The Spaniard aims for Q3 in today’s Qualifying

Barcelona, May 13th 2017.- Carlos Sainz finished ninth in the third and final Free Practice session for the Spanish Grand Prix, where the Spaniard completed 19 laps with a personal best of 1’21”835. Carlos felt “a small step-forward” and is optimistic ahead of today’s Qualifying session.

Free Practice 3 was held under clear blue skies, with the air at 25 degrees and the track surface at 34. Carlos used all three compounds available for the weekend, although he focused mainly in the medium and the soft ones since these two are the preferred options for Sunday’s race.

The driver of Scuderia Toro Rosso began with an installation lap on hard tyres to check that his car didn’t have any mechanical issues. After a short visit to the pits, he moved to mediums and stopped the clock at 1:23.653 on a five-lap run, moving up to the Top 5 for a brief moment.
With eight minutes to go, and after a second run on medium tyres, Carlos picked up a set of soft tyres to do a Qualifying simulation on his Toro Rosso STR12. The result was encouraging, a 1’21”835 lap.

After jumping out of his STR12, the Spaniard shared his views.

It seems like we did a small step-forward compared to yesterday, but we must be patient. We know this track will heat up a lot, the wind will be stronger. It will depend on how well do we adjust ourselves to these conditions”.

Wind will be a crucial factor. “With this year’s cars, we are so dependent of downforce that in one lap you may take a corner up to a tenth faster depending on the wind”.

He also talked about FIA’s decision to increment the DRS zone in the main straight. “I think it’s good for us for Qualifying, because it’s more time flat-out. For the race, it will depend. If we qualify very well and we are under attack, it won’t be good. If we are attacking, it will help us”.
Qualifying will begin at 14:00 Spanish time. As usual, we will follow Carlos’ closely via and our Twitter account @carlosainzinfo.