May 27, 2017

Carlos Sainz, the first of the mid-field in Free Practice 3 at Monaco GP

He matched his Free Practice 2 lap-time on used tyres

Montecarlo, May 27th 2017.- Carlos Sainz  achieved a well-deserved seventh place in the third and final Free Practice session of the Monaco Grand Prix. The Spaniard of Scuderia Toro Rosso set a 1:13.400 lap, exactly the same time he did in Free Practice 2. It was enough to finish as the fastest of the mid-field, right behind the unbeatable Ferraris, McLarens and Red Bulls. This result gives Carlos high hopes for Qualifying, a crucial moment in the development of this weekend.

Carlos completed his installation lap on soft tyres, before waiting for a bit before rejoining the track 14 minutes later on brand new supersofts. He started with a long run of 15 laps, improving his pace constantly until clocking a 1:13.684 lap. Finally, on that very same set, he lapped at 1:13.400 as the chequered flag was waved into the air, enough to finish seventh and to stay ahead of his teammate and the rest of the grid but the top teams.

As he took off his helmet, Carlos said he was satisfied. "We are now moving to Qualifying but we are still in that Top 8, which is our goal. It wouldn’t be that bad to be the fourth team here. It’s what we have been aiming for since the very first race, but it has taken us a little time. I’ve got the feeling that if everything goes smoothly, we could be right behind the leaders in Qualifying".

Talking about the performance within his STR12, he admitted they will look for further improvements but conceived that the current pace is good. "We have consistency. Maybe today I was not as comfortable as I was on Thursday, because it had some understeer and it was more difficult to make it turn, but we will try to improve that. I think the other teams have improved more than us, but we must do that extra step in Qualifying", he said.

The driver knows what he needs for Qualifying. "Confidence, because that is the first thing you need in Monaco. And then to try and make your fastest lap when your tyres are in the optimum window. If you can do both, you should do well in Qualifying", he concluded.

The Qualifying session for the Monaco Grand Prix will begin at 14:00 CEST. We will follow Carlos via his official website and his Twitter account @carlosainzinfo.