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Sainz claims Ferrari are 'nowhere near the limit' with new car

Carlos Sainz has described an "encouraging" start to pre-season testing for Ferrari and says there is plenty more to come from the team in terms of performance.

Carlos Sainz has warned that Ferrari are "nowhere near" to finding performance - or the limit - with their new F1 car, despite a strong start to testing. Ferrari have featured towards the top of the timesheets throughout this week's first pre-season test session at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, with Charles Leclerc setting the overall pace for the team on Thursday . Ferrari have also completed more laps than any other team so far, surpassing a combined total of 300 laps for the two days of running in Spain, split between Sainz and Leclerc – the latter adding almost 50 more across Friday morning.

Ferrari "nowhere near" the limit at testing so far

Reflecting on Ferrari's test so far, Sainz described an "encouraging" couple of days, but made clear that the Scuderia have not gone searching for performance with the F1-75. "It's been a good start in terms of reliability," he commented on Thursday. "We've managed to complete one day and a half of testing without pretty much any single issue, which is an encouraging start for us – this is what we're here for in Barcelona. "Unfortunately for you guys [the media], it's not very exciting, because we are nowhere near to the limit of the car, or finding where the performances is, but we're doing laps and we're completing them nicely."

Sainz says it's "impossible to know" where teams stand

Sainz added that not knowing what run plans teams are working through makes it "impossible" to predict how the pecking order is shaping up, even if Ferrari's early pace and reliability looks promising. "With my car, just by adding fuel or taking out fuel, I can go three or four seconds faster or slower," Sainz went on to comment. "Where do I stand in the three-to-four-second window? If I stand in the middle, where all the others stand is impossible to predict... "When you're two-tenths off Daniel [Ricciardo] in the morning , or having three or four seconds of margin up or down, it's impossible to know." Sainz is back at the wheel for Friday afternoon's final session in Barcelona.

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