Away from the magnificence of Mercedes and challenge from Red Bull, F1’s most intense battle is that of the midfield. And competing right in the mix of it are Carlos Sainz Jr and McLaren.
The Spaniard has had some great performances, with the P2 at Monza the standout moment for him thus far. Safe to say, he has impressed McLaren Team Principal Andreas Seidl with his racecraft and professional personality.
Seidl was quoted as saying, “A race like [Turkey] just confirmed the quality Carlos has. We know from previous races in the last years that he likes all of these tricky conditions, he likes these wet or mixed conditions.
“We know that he is performing well in these conditions, and that he has this talent to take the right approach in terms of risk.”
It was confirmed prior to the start of the season that Sainz would move to Ferrari as a replacement for Sebastian Vettel for 2021 and beyond. Undoubtedly, the Italian giants would be pleased with the 2-time podium finisher’s performances in 2020.
“And he manages to keep the car on track while still making progress on track, and making the moves stick like he did today.
“And it’s simply a big benefit. He’s a great driver. There’s a reason why Ferrari went after him for next year,” concluded Seidl on the topic.
Sainz has finished in the points 9 out of 14 times this year, and that includes 3 unfortunate retirements as well. He has been the lead driver for McLaren this season and currently stands 7th in the Drivers’ rankings.
It is hard to believe that Carlos Sainz was quite close to not having an F1 seat for 2019. Following Daniel Ricciardo’s announcement in 2018, McLaren picked up Sainz for the new season.
But things will be quite different at Ferrari, for the Scuderia are currently nothing like the team from the past. Ferrari are in a bit of a rebuilding process. And along with Charles Leclerc, they will rely on Sainz to offer his feedback.
On paper at least, Leclerc and Sainz would form quite a formidable pairing, capable of taking on the top teams. And if Ferrari design the 2021 car per their expectations, we could see a tough fight from both drivers for the podium slots.