Carlos will start seventeenth after using the fifth MGU-H; Session is stopped two hours due to bad weather conditons
Monza, September 2nd 2017.- Carlos Sainz finished fifteenth in the Qualifying session for the Italian Grand Prix, one of the longest ever in Formula 1 history due to the torrential rain that affected the circuit. The Spaniard of Scuderia Toro Rosso will take a ten-place penalty for using the fifth MGU-H of the season, but will start from seventeenth because some of his rivals have penalties too.
The Italian Qualifying was heavily compromised by the rain, which affected the session from the first minute until the very last. Weather conditions were quite similar to the ones experienced in Free Practice 3, which meant the track was extremely slippery.
Q1 began at 14:00. Carlos left the garage on a set of full-wet tyres, ready to make his way to Q2. He set a 1:44.492, but then the red-flag was waved into the air since a car had crashed in the main straight. The Spaniard was fourth by then.
Race Direction stopped the session so marshals could pick-up the car, but then rain intensified and it became increasingly difficult to restart. For two hours and a half, the FIA inspected the track every 15 minutes. Q1 started once again at 16:40.
Carlos left the pits on another set of full-wet tyres, with 13 minutes to go. Rain decreased and the track started to dry. The Spaniard returned to the pits after four laps and changed to intermediates, securing his Q2-ticket after setting a 1:39.848 lap.
In Q2, the track was wet but the circuit was faster by the minute. In theory, the driver to start his lap the last would be the driver with the better chances of entering Q3. Carlos set a 1:39.176 on full-wets, then improved to 1:38.526 on intermediates, a faster yet critical compound since his STR12 was running on very low downforce. Sadly, it was not enough.
The Spaniard of Scuderia Toro Rosso had a ten-place penalty for using the fifth MGU-H of the year, but will start from seventeenth because other drivers have penalties too. He will start to fightback from there.
Carlos gave his views on the day after the session was over.
"We were really looking forward to a good Qualifying, but there was no way. I never had a good feeling with the car, neither with the tyres. It was difficult to see which one was better in such a changing track. Knowing that we were on low-downforce, that tomorrow is expected to be dry… Using a wet set-up was not worth it".
He is confident going into the race. "We are very aware that tomorrow is our day, that today was not very useful because we had a 10-place penalty. We would be behind no matter what. Tomorrow we will try to recover, let’s see if we can overtake in the straights and move forward".
The race of the Italian GP will begin tomorrow Sunday at 14:00 local time. As always, we will keep you updated on Carlos via his official website www.carlosainz.es and our Twitter account @carlosainzinfo.