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Carlos Sainz

How 'interested observer' Sainz plotted 'frustrating' Qatar GP

A DNS in Qatar enabled Carlos Sainz the rare opportunity to follow a Grand Prix from the garage.

Sainz US
Article
To news overview © XPBimages

The fuel leak that forced Carlos Sainz into skipping the Qatar Grand Prix enabled the Ferrari driver to plot the race as an "interested observer."

On Sunday afternoon in Lusail, the leak was discovered on the SF-23 machine, meaning Sainz withdrew from the race as team-mate Charles Leclerc went onto finish in fifth.

It was just the third time all season Sainz failed to score points in a race after coming a penalised 12th in Australia before retiring after first-lap contact with Oscar Piastri in Belgium.

The DNS - the second of Sainz's career following the 2020 Belgian GP at McLaren - gave him a different viewpoint on the race, as he explained how he was plotting where he would have been during certain points of the race.

Sainz's frustration in Qatar

I was an interested observer, obviously looking at strategy and I was constantly looking where I would have been," Sainz told media including RacingNews365.

"The brain is always going to the race trace and saying: 'I would have been here with my strategy, I would have tried to do this and this' and then you just realise that it's not worth it because you get even more frustrated and you start thinking what if, what if, what if?

"It was frustrating from a driver's perspective to watch the race from the garage but it's how it goes.

"When you have an issue that is out of your control, I feel like the day that that happens, you struggle more [to move on].

"You're more frustrated, against the world, against whatever happened, because you cannot control it, you feel a bit powerless and when it happens, you really are upset.

"But then Monday morning, after a good night's sleep you're like: 'Well, [there's] nothing I could have done and just focus on the next one.' I find that relatively easy.

"On the other hand, when you know you've made a mistake, I find it more difficult to turn the page and I spend a few days dwelling a bit on what could I have done and how could I have avoided that mistake and what I could have done differently.

"Those are two differences, and that's why maybe Qatar hurt a bit more because I couldn't even start and you go all the way, flying around the world, to not even start the race and you put in all that effort, it’s frustrating."

F1 2023 United States Grand Prix RN365 News dossier

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