After the summer break, the Spanish driver will run for the first time in a Formula 1 in one of his favorite circuits, Spa-Francorchamps
What are you expecting from the weekend ahead in Belgium?
Carlos Sainz: "Yes, you can feel that everyone in the team is encouraged to keep pushing. After Hungary, we are one step closer to our target of finishing fifth in the Championship. We are all working flat-out together and this is a very good sign! We will need a kind of race like the one we had in Hungary to be able to be competitive in Spa. Well, hey, maybe not exactly 100% the same... [Smiles in a cheeky way]. We know we'd be strong in sector two if we could run all the downforce we have, but the problem is that the straights in sectors one and three are so long, that we will have to take all that downforce off to be competitive. So we are hoping for some rain, that's for sure!"
Carlos Sainz: "Exactly! [They both laugh and start doing their own particular rain dances] It would be great if the rain could give us a hand... Anyway, we will do our best to extract the maximum out of the car whatever the conditions are and try and do what we did in Canada; it was a solid weekend even if we didn't have a competitive package."
Let's talk about the track, because it's one where you've both been really successful..
Carlos Sainz: "I also have a similar story: In the Renault World Series last year in Spa I won back to back races in a very solid way and it really consolidated my championship chances as well as my position within the Red Bull Junior Team."
You have big smile in your face... It really is a track that brings back good memories to you!
Carlos Sainz: "Yes, it will be emotional to go back there! The good memories will definitely give us a lot of energy and I will try and perform at the same level as I did there last year. There's no doubt it's my favourite track together with Silverstone, I really, really like it for so many reasons, it's difficult to pick just one!"
Carlos Sainz: "Also, the fact of doing well there makes you like the circuit even more. I specially enjoy all the downhill section from the big long hairpin to Pouhon, the right-left at the end of sector two... It's just a really exceptional track."
Carlos Sainz: "I agree, I'm a completely different driver to the one I was before Australia and we are only half way through the season. Bring on the second half, let's go racing!"
Schedule Belgian Grand Prix Formula 1:
FRIDAY, 21 AUGUST
10:00h - 11:30h Free practice 1
14:00h - 15:30h Free practice 2
SATURDAY, 22 AUGUST
11:00h - 12:00h Free practice 3
14:00h - 15:00h Qualifying
SUNDAY, 23 AUGUST