Oct 27, 2016

Carlos Sainz in Mexico: "I want to have fun and make the most out of the car"

Today he was invited again to the FIA Thursday Press Conference

Mexico City, October 27th 2016.- Carlos Sainz arrives at Monaco feeling great, as last Sunday he equalled his best-ever result in Formula 1 after finishing the United States Grand Prix in sixth place.

Carlos fight with Fernando Alonso in the closing stages of the race caught the attention of the world, but in the end his soft tyres fell apart and Fernando managed to get through using the DRS in the back-straight. But the truth is that the Spanish duel proved to be very positive for Carlos, as he didn’t make any mistakes while defending his position, first from Massa and later from Alonso.

Carlos arrived yesterday at Mexico. On Wednesday, he played a football match together with Barcelona and Spain former player Carles Puyol. The event was organized to support ‘From the Street to the Pitch’, a social program. Esteban Gutiérrez and Nico Hülkenberg also attended the event, as did several Hispanic professional players. Carlos felt comfortable in his new ‘office’ and even scored the first goal of his team, using his right foot.

Today the driver from Toro Rosso made himself at home at the Autodromo Hermanos Rodríguez. Last year’s race was a bittersweet one for the Spaniard. He started P11 but finished P13, as his tyre strategy compromised his pace in the closing chapters of the event, which was affected by a surprising Safety-Car.

For this year’s Grand Prix, Pirelli has brought the medium, the soft and the supersoft compounds. His team has selected the same tyre allocation for his two drivers. That is, two sets of mediums, three softs and eight supersofts.

After his great performance in Austin, today Carlos was invited to attend the FIA Thursday Press Conference, where he verbalized his happiness about the Texan race and the battle he fought against his friend Alonso.

"The fact that I am a Formula 1 driver is already very satisfying, because I know that there are only 21 other drivers like me in the world. But yes, that duel with Fernando [Alonso] was maybe a little bit more special. He has been my reference since I was a child. I’ve watched all his races. And then suddenly you are fighting for a P5 with him in the last lap of a race. When you’re behind the wheel, you aren’t really conscious of the bigger picture. It’s when you go to sleep that you realize that you’ve done something really exciting. It’s true that I didn’t have the necessary grip to fight harder, but I still did all I could".

Carlos also talked to Movistar F1 about the satisfaction that has followed the United States GP. "I’m very happy. The race in Austin proved that we’re doing the things right. It was about time that we sent out that message. It’s perfect to have a race like the Austin one in the middle of our second half of the season, which has been pretty hard so far".

He also talked about the Mexican circuit and the fans that will fill its grandstands this weekend. "I like the fact that the circuit is right in the middle of the city. The Mexican fans create a great atmosphere and that is a blast. We were in Japan not so long ago and I would say that here the fans are also among the very best of the year. Regarding the track, I do like its fast turns but it also has several chicanes and changes of direction".

"The track is very green, just like any new track. It was indeed one of the races I regretted the most last year, because we were compromised by a Safety-Car. We made an error and got lapped as we had to do an extra stop, so it's time to do things right this time. I'm looking forward to being in the car".

Regarding his possibilities for the Grand Prix, he was very cautious. "I prefer to stay calm, because what happened in Austin was due to several factors coming together and we made the most out of that opportunity that arose. Maybe Mexico is the best circuit of the ones remaining this year, with very tight turns. I'm also running with the parachute here [talking about his slow Top Speed] but that can be helpful in the twisty areas. I just want to have fun and make the most out of the car. If I stay P12, then P12 and let's go on".

Last, a South-African journalist asked Carlos about the nickname he was given by his friends, Chili, something which is indeed very Mexican. "I don't like chili, indeed. That's the curious think. I hate spicy food. Last night we went out and I ordered some tacos, but I have to let them because they were too tasty for me. So I wouldn't say that chili is my favourite dish".

Free Practice for the Mexican Grand Prix will begin tomorrow at 10:00 local time, 17:00 Spanish time. We will follow them live via www.carlosainz.es and our Twitter account @carlosainzinfo.