Sep 29, 2016

Carlos Sainz talks about his future in Malaysia: "I'd like to be in a winning team as soon as possible"

He thinks it's difficult to make predictions for the weekend

Sepang, September 29th 2016.- Carlos Sainz is ready to face the Malaysian GP. He arrived at the country two days ago, so he's had time to adjust himself to the local time zone and get rid of jet lag. He has already done the track-walk around the ever demanding Sepang track together with his engineers. They paid a lot of attention to the new asphalt, which has produced small changes in terms of camber and racing lines in some turns. Everything is ready for Malaysia's 18th year in the Formula One calendar.

Carlos arrived at Malaysia feeling confident and willing to be again in the points after an unlucky Gran Prix in Singapore, where he couldn't translate his brilliant P6 in Qualifying into a solid final result. He knows well this track, as he raced there last year -he was eighth in his second-ever Formula 1 race. He always competed here in two races in his Formula BMW days, back in 2010, when he was in the early stages of his single-seater career.

Back to 2016, Pirelli brings a conservative tyre allocation, picking up the soft, the medium and the hard compound, although their minimum pressures are slightly lower than usual, with 21.5 PSI in the front end and 18.5 in the rear end. Scuderia Toro Rosso has chosen the same tyres for his two drivers: three sets of the hard tyre, two of the medium one and eight of the soft one. That latter compound will be the obvious Qualifying choice on Saturday.

Today, Carlos spoke to the media in his press conference, where he gave his first thoughts about the Malaysian Grand Prix and his personal future in Formula 1.

"We still don't know where we will be this weekend. It's incredible to see how much our position can vary depending on the track we're in. In a place like Spa-Francorchamps or Monza, we didn't make it to Q2 and were three seconds behind the lead. Nevertheless, in the following round, Singapore, we made it to Q3 using a single set of tyres. Our performance varies a lot, so I prefer to wait until Friday to see how things are going and then think about the result we can fight for her. It’s not Singapore, but it’s not Spa neither. I'm prepared for a very tight Q3 fight, but although this is not Singapore I don't expect to be 15th neither. If it is the case indeed, I will be worried. The normal thing would be to be among the 12 or 13 faster cars. If it's the case, then it is possible to fight for Q3".

During the track-walk with his engineers, Carlos got to know the changes that this year have been made to the track. The changes made in the last turn caught his eye. "They've changed the camber, now we'll have less grip. The racing line also changes a bit, but after three laps in Free Practice we will handle that. In the end, the best way to get to know these changed turns is in the car. You test three or four laps, and then you know how to take them. You never know what to expect from a new tarmac. If it rains, we may have standing water, but both Toro Rosso and me would welcome rain. We've always been there, capitalizing our chances when rained appeared. We did so in Silverstone or Monaco. I would mind, even if it's a crazy weather. I like rain. Even from my days in Formula BMW, I've always been good with rain even if I lacked experience. You improvise, you have to find the correct racing line. You don't use the sim data that much, you use the speed and the line you feel it's best. For me, that's fun".

Regarding the doubts seen in the last few races about the aero package of the car, the tests that have been done in the last few races have brought interesting conclusions: "We have some conclusions; the team has analysed that and has reached conclusions, but it's still to be decided what we will do this weekend. Our performance depends a lot of the track we are in".

When the journalists asked him about his future, Carlos expressed his wish to keep on progressing. "I think I've developed a lot as a driver, and that now I have reached the optimum level to try and make another step in my F1 career. I see it very difficult for 2017, but for 2018 I would like to be fighting the drivers that fight for victories. I would like that. It's not a secret that for me the ideal thing would be to see it happening next year, but there are no chances. That won't happen. But both I and Red Bull know that the moment is drawing closer. I think this year has been useful, both for me and my team, to show that I'm ready for when they want me in Red Bull. I'm ready to take that step. I want to be in a winning team fighting for Championship, and if it's not possible to see that in 2017, then 2018".

Regarding the possible discussions with other teams, Carlos showed his gratitude. "For me, it's honouring to see that a manufacturer is worried about me, to see that they want to know my contractual situation. Red Bull guides your career, they paid five years of my junior career and that is millions. I understand if they don't want to let me go in the best moment of my career; they invested a lot of money. For me, it's an honour to have the interest of a manufacturer. It's an honour to know they want me to develop the car, to create a solid baseline for the future. Anyway, my main goal is to fight for the World Championship, if not in 2017, then 2018. I hope it's with Red Bull, which is my main priority. I know it's difficult, but I must find the shortest way".

For 2017, Carlos explained that Toro Rosso will be stronger as they will use an up-to-date power unit. "The key for next year is that we will enjoy the same Renault engine development as Renault. It will be tough on the chassis side, but not on the engine. The problem is that this year it was tough with both ends, as our budget is not the biggest and our engine development has been none because we're running a 2015-spec. As the year goes by, Toro Rosso will always be more limited than the likes of Ferrari, Mercedes and the richer teams. Formula 1 is a development war".

The budget limitations don't affect Carlos' trust in his team. "I fully trust my team Toro Rosso. I know they will build a good chassis for next year. If there were still any doubts about that, Singapore proved that Toro Rosso has maybe the third or the fourth best chassis of the grid. We were lacking lots of top speed, but still qualified sixth just a second behind the second Red Bull. That shows how good this car is in cornering", he concluded.Sepang, September 29th 2016.- Carlos Sainz is ready to face the Malaysian GP. He arrived at the country two days ago, so he's had time to adjust himself to the local time zone and get rid of jet lag. He has already done the track-walk around the ever demanding Sepang track together with his engineers. They paid a lot of attention to the new asphalt, which has produced small changes in terms of camber and racing lines in some turns. Everything is ready for Malaysia's 18th year in the Formula One calendar.

Carlos arrived at Malaysia feeling confident and willing to be again in the points after an unlucky Gran Prix in Singapore, where he couldn't translate his brilliant P6 in Qualifying into a solid final result. He knows well this track, as he raced there last year -he was eighth in his second-ever Formula 1 race. He always competed here in two races in his Formula BMW days, back in 2010, when he was in the early stages of his single-seater career.

Back to 2016, Pirelli brings a conservative tyre allocation, picking up the soft, the medium and the hard compound, although their minimum pressures are slightly lower than usual, with 21.5 PSI in the front end and 18.5 in the rear end. Scuderia Toro Rosso has chosen the same tyres for his two drivers: three sets of the hard tyre, two of the medium one and eight of the soft one. That latter compound will be the obvious Qualifying choice on Saturday.

Today, Carlos spoke to the media in his press conference, where he gave his first thoughts about the Malaysian Grand Prix and his personal future in Formula 1.

"We still don't know where we will be this weekend. It's incredible to see how much our position can vary depending on the track we're in. In a place like Spa-Francorchamps or Monza, we didn't make it to Q2 and were three seconds behind the lead. Nevertheless, in the following round, Singapore, we made it to Q3 using a single set of tyres. Our performance varies a lot, so I prefer to wait until Friday to see how things are going and then think about the result we can fight for her. It’s not Singapore, but it’s not Spa neither. I'm prepared for a very tight Q3 fight, but although this is not Singapore I don't expect to be 15th neither. If it is the case indeed, I will be worried. The normal thing would be to be among the 12 or 13 faster cars. If it's the case, then it is possible to fight for Q3".

During the track-walk with his engineers, Carlos got to know the changes that this year have been made to the track. The changes made in the last turn caught his eye. "They've changed the camber, now we'll have less grip. The racing line also changes a bit, but after three laps in Free Practice we will handle that. In the end, the best way to get to know these changed turns is in the car. You test three or four laps, and then you know how to take them. You never know what to expect from a new tarmac. If it rains, we may have standing water, but both Toro Rosso and me would welcome rain. We've always been there, capitalizing our chances when rained appeared. We did so in Silverstone or Monaco. I would mind, even if it's a crazy weather. I like rain. Even from my days in Formula BMW, I've always been good with rain even if I lacked experience. You improvise, you have to find the correct racing line. You don't use the sim data that much, you use the speed and the line you feel it's best. For me, that's fun".

Regarding the doubts seen in the last few races about the aero package of the car, the tests that have been done in the last few races have brought interesting conclusions: "We have some conclusions; the team has analysed that and has reached conclusions, but it's still to be decided what we will do this weekend. Our performance depends a lot of the track we are in".

When the journalists asked him about his future, Carlos expressed his wish to keep on progressing. "I think I've developed a lot as a driver, and that now I have reached the optimum level to try and make another step in my F1 career. I see it very difficult for 2017, but for 2018 I would like to be fighting the drivers that fight for victories. I would like that. It's not a secret that for me the ideal thing would be to see it happening next year, but there are no chances. That won't happen. But both I and Red Bull know that the moment is drawing closer. I think this year has been useful, both for me and my team, to show that I'm ready for when they want me in Red Bull. I'm ready to take that step. I want to be in a winning team fighting for Championship, and if it's not possible to see that in 2017, then 2018".

Regarding the possible discussions with other teams, Carlos showed his gratitude. "For me, it's honouring to see that a manufacturer is worried about me, to see that they want to know my contractual situation. Red Bull guides your career, they paid five years of my junior career and that is millions. I understand if they don't want to let me go in the best moment of my career; they invested a lot of money. For me, it's an honour to have the interest of a manufacturer. It's an honour to know they want me to develop the car, to create a solid baseline for the future. Anyway, my main goal is to fight for the World Championship, if not in 2017, then 2018. I hope it's with Red Bull, which is my main priority. I know it's difficult, but I must find the shortest way".

For 2017, Carlos explained that Toro Rosso will be stronger as they will use an up-to-date power unit. "The key for next year is that we will enjoy the same Renault engine development as Renault. It will be tough on the chassis side, but not on the engine. The problem is that this year it was tough with both ends, as our budget is not the biggest and our engine development has been none because we're running a 2015-spec. As the year goes by, Toro Rosso will always be more limited than the likes of Ferrari, Mercedes and the richer teams. Formula 1 is a development war".

The budget limitations don't affect Carlos' trust in his team. "I fully trust my team Toro Rosso. I know they will build a good chassis for next year. If there were still any doubts about that, Singapore proved that Toro Rosso has maybe the third or the fourth best chassis of the grid. We were lacking lots of top speed, but still qualified sixth just a second behind the second Red Bull. That shows how good this car is in cornering", he concluded.