Carlos Sainz says Ferrari picked the optimal strategy for the Miami Grand Prix, even though the Scuderia failed to challenge at the front.
On a difficult day that laid bare the distance between Ferrari and the leading Red Bulls, Sainz started third on the grid but slipped to fifth by the flag, with teammate Charles Leclerc finishing two places further back in seventh.
Making his pit stop on Lap 18, Sainz managed to leapfrog Fernando Alonso when the Aston Martin driver made his own stop a few laps later, but with Alonso's car working better than the Ferrari, he made it back past Sainz a lap later, and George Russell also overtook the Ferrari later in the race.
Sainz was also slapped with a five-second time penalty for speeding in the pit lane, though this did not affect his final result.
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Sainz: Ferrari limited in what they can achieve
Speaking after the race, Sainz said Ferrari's decision to employ the undercut was the correct one, and that an inherent lack of pace with his SF-23 was to blame for not finishing higher than fifth.
"We went for the undercut and it worked," Sainz told media, including RacingNews365.com.
"[But] with the car we have right now, we have very little flexibility to try undercuts and overcuts, but in terms of strategy it was the right call at the right time.
"With hindsight, I think we were never going to finish higher than Fernando.
"I had to stay under the limit for the rest of the race if I wanted to make it to the end, and with the wind conditions, and how tough we are on tyres, that Hard stint just became too long for us.
"We did the right thing. The Medium worked very well for me. It was when we put on the Hard tyres and had to do longer stints that we struggled more than the others."
Balve Bains is joined by RacingNews365.com Editorial Director Dieter Rencken and Asia Correspondent Michael Butterworth to dissect the key talking points from the Miami Grand Prix.