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Carlos Sainz

Sainz felt on limit of crashing in 'mentally stressful' Baku race

Carlos Sainz ended the Azerbaijan Grand Prix in fifth place after what the Ferrari driver admits had been a challenging weekend in Baku.

Sainz Baku
To news overview © RN365/Michael Potts

Carlos Sainz admits that he felt on the limit of crashing or losing his Ferrari during a "mentally stressful" Azerbaijan Grand Prix.

The Spaniard had struggled throughout the weekend in Baku, having been unable to match the pace of teammate Charles Leclerc on Friday or Saturday, and this left him feeling uneasy during Sunday's race.

Ending the event in P5 came as something of a relief to Sainz.

Sainz reflects on challenging Azerbaijan GP

"The first stint on the Medium [tyre], I looked like I found a bit of pace back," Sainz told media, including RacingNews365.com, after the race.

"And then as soon as I put the Hard [tyre] on, my struggles of the weekend appeared again and I just had to bring home a P5.

"I was very on the limit of crashing or feeling like I was losing the car, so [it was a] pretty long race and mentally stressful after the struggle of the weekend.

"But [I] brought home the P5. I'm sure we will find out why this happened this weekend, and I'm sure in Miami we'll be back."

No time to 'analyse' problems

When asked if he had an understanding of why the weekend – which featured the first-ever Sprint Shootout session prior to the Sprint – had proven so difficult, Sainz suggested that there had not been the time to look into this.

"No, because we haven't had time to sit down and analyse," he explained.

"We've had to very quickly go into the next session, to fine-tune the car with the front wing and the switches to put it in a bit of a better place. But we haven't [had the time to] dig deep into the data to see what could have happened this weekend.

"I'm sure [that], together with my engineers, we'll find out and we will be back on form in Miami. It's just that it's obviously a shame to have such a frustrating long weekend here in Baku."

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F1 2023 Azerbaijan Grand Prix RN365 News dossier

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