The Enstone-based team moves up one spot in the Constructors Championship
Austin, October 22nd 2017.- Carlos Sainz achieved a brilliant seventh place in his maiden race as an official race-driver for Renault Sport F1 Team, at the United States Grand Prix. The Spaniard scored six points that enable the Enstone-based team to move up one spot in the Constructors Championship with three races remaining in the season.
Race-day began with rain at the Circuit of the Americas, but the track dried-up as morning progressed and sun shined in the sky by the time the Grand Prix was about to begin. Before getting at the wheel of his car, the Spaniard took part in the all-new introductory ceremony that Liberty Media has put together this weekend. Drivers were introduced one by one by non-other than world-famous speaker Michael Buffer, who referred to Carlos by the nickname of his father: ‘El Matador’.
Carlos started from seventh, but on the opening lap he was overtaken by McLaren’s Fernando Alonso. During the first part of the race, the Spaniard focused on taking care of his ultrasoft tyres. This enabled him to go longer than his rivals in his first stint, gaining a few spots as they visited the pits. He was racing in sixth by the time his turn came in Lap 19.
Carlos joined the track in eleventh, but he was on much fresher tyres than his rivals. He was on softs. As the race reached its halfway point, he found himself in the most intense battle of the event. He was racing in eighth, but his pace was much superior to Force India’s Sergio Pérez. Well aware of his rivals’ Top Speed, the Spaniard attacked in the twisty area of the circuit. His offense began in Turn 12 and lasted all the way to Turn 19, as he forced his rival to take risky racing lines and gained momentum to move up to eighth. Carlos would then advance and challenge Esteban Ocon, but he switched to a more conservative engine-map because he was low on fuel.
Carlos’ happiness was evident as he talked to the media after the race. "It was a very good day and I am very happy. It was an almost perfect weekend from the beginning until the end. Now we go to Mexico having passed this exam".
He also talked about his overtaking on Sergio Perez. "It’s very challenging to follow another car with the 2017 cars. You have to take different racing lines. I took time in preparing the overtaking on Sergio, because I knew he had a high Top Speed. I had to get him in the twisty zone. I did it using the outside line. It was a nice overtaking and he was very professional leaving me the space".
"It is a shame that I could not attack Esteban, because my pace was better than his. In the end, I had to save fuel. It says a lot about the car and the team, that we had better pace than Force India. It’s been a very complete weekend. I thank the team for making me feel at home since the very beginning", he said.
Formula One will travel now all the way to Mexico City. The Autodromo Hermanos Rodríguez will host the Mexican Grand Prix next week. As always, we will keep you updated on Carlos via his official website www.carlosainz.es and our Twitter account @carlosainzinfo.