Sainz “has everything he needs to be a top F1 driver” – Seidl

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In the round-up: McLaren team principal Andreas Seidl pays tribute to the team’s outgoing driver Carlos Sainz Jnr.

What they say

Sainz, who finished sixth in the championship with McLaren for the past two years, has joined Ferrari for the 2021 F1 season:

Carlos obviously played a very important role in our journey in the last three years. He came to the team after a really difficult period for the team and then really from the first outing onwards, his test in Abu Dhabi two years ago, he gave it all for us both inside the car as a driver.

Also outside the car, in terms of the working relationship and also attitude he had towards the engineers, I think he was very important when it came to giving input regarding the development direction we had to take with the car.

So he was a very important asset. In the end the points he collected with us in these two years speak for itself and the result we could achieve as a team in the constructors championship.

What was impressive for me, to be honest, never having worked with Carlos beforehand, is to see how he was approaching race weekends, how focussed he is during race weekends, how he’s going into this zone and then simply pulling it off when it mattered, both in qualifying in the race. He’s very strong when it comes to executing the race. He’s very strong in keeping the overview, finding the right balance between risk and reward on track.

If you see what he did this year, the first laps he did, seeing how many positions he could make up many, many times in the first lap, overtaking moves he did, the way he’s managing the tyres together with his race engineer, obviously, which is a big challenge, is impressive.

So I think he has everything he needs to become a top driver in Formula 1. He’s moving now to Ferrari after the two year things with us so we wish him all the best there. And as I’ve said, we’ll give it all to make sure we beat him on track.
Andreas Seidl

Quotes: Dieter Rencken

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Comment of the day

The chances of the Australian Grand Prix going ahead as planned in March are diminishing:

Melbourne has just come off an incredibly strict 110 day lockdown to eliminate the virus. The public won’t be happy about any risk to that. New South Wales are having clusters that have 10 cases per day and Victoria closed the border to them.

I just can’t see the grand prix happening. Countries that have it under control aren’t going to risk it.
Grannie Annie

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Author information

Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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28 comments on “Sainz “has everything he needs to be a top F1 driver” – Seidl”

  1. I think Sainz is an excellent driver who makes very few errors. He is a great defender as well. Ferrari will do well with him provided they can deliver a fast car and avoid any garage favourites. He will certainly test Leclerc and ,like a few other teams with new driver pairings, will be great to watch and see just who prevails. ATM I am looking at a 50/50 split!

  2. Fascinating interview on auto motor und sport. They always get lots of technical insight. Love the bits where Allison jokingly thanks the media.

  3. Impressive what australia is doing, the levels they’re going to to eradicate the virus!

    1. Yes it’s impressive how much they are moving to a totalitarian state

      1. I mean, they were already well on the way when they started locking up kids on their prison island. But necessary public health measures to control a deadly virus aren’t particularly totalitarian by comparison.

      2. We’ll take some restrictions over illness and death, thanks.

      3. Dave (@davewillisporter)
        3rd January 2021, 13:26

        @paeschli There’s been a lot of bleating about totalitarian or authoritarian government actions. It’s a fitting reminder that when Britain was fighting WW2 the government conscripted soldiers, told farmers what to grow, conscripted women into munitions factories, took your metal fencing away and rationed food. That was necessary then to survive and the country worked together to achieve that aim. It’s no different now. It is that serious. Give me another Churchill instead of the flippety floppety lack of decisive leadership we have now.

        1. @davewillisporter not to mention that there would be a lot of people looking at the supposedly “totalitarian state” that Australia is and would comment about how liberal that state is.

          If anything, Patrick’s whining about Australia supposedly “moving to a totalitarian state” shows how out of touch he is with the wider world and what a sheltered and privileged existence he must have had to think that the requirement to show some degree of consideration and responsibility for the welfare of others is “totalitarianism”.

      4. On Covid:
        Australia might relax further in a few weeks / months, and my colleagues over there told me the “totalitarian” regime is and was less restrictive now and 6 months ago (winter there).
        On other issues, like detention of immigrants we should shut up: Our camps in South Europe are just as bad.
        On Covid again:
        In the mean while Europe and the USA will keep digging graves and depleting H.S. resources. 6 feet under doesn’t feel like freedom to me, and a society needs to protect itself against egoistic individualists.
        The recommendations of our governments clearly don’t work as intended, if I see what happens in airports, parties and on the borders of our country. Even a mandated quarantine for returning travelers are ignored by 5% individuals, causing extended trouble for the 80% that try to do what is needed.
        Soft healers make stinking wounds (Dutch proverb)

      5. @paeschli
        As a Victorian, I think the bulk of us felt like it was the right thing to do. There was, and still is, some financial support for businesses and staff who have lost income and jobs. Unlike a totalitarian state there is also lively debate and opposition too, so plenty of scrutiny.

        Interestingly, according to the below article, Victoria and the UK had similar numbers of COVID cases around August, I think I know where I’d rather be now!

        Bring F1 to Aus for pre season, and a few races to make the quarantine worth while! I’m sure there is plenty of idle workers prepared to put in to bring some tracks/street courses up to FIA spec …


  4. “Mercedes technical director James Allison says the team weren’t able to fully exploit the benefits offered by DRS due to the limited opportunities for testing and development in the compressed season. ”

    DAS a shame if James was talking about DRS. ;-)

    1. I thought it was DRS which they couldn’t use as Lewis drove off with Bottas a distant second.

  5. What does Seidl mean by ‘journey in the last three years? Neither Sainz nor he was in the team yet. Does he mean three years since leaving Honda for Renault power?

    Mallorca doesn’t have any proper race track as far as I could find via Google, only what looks like a go-kart track. Definitely nothing that would have the necessary FIA grade 1 license.

    1. I forgot: The situation with the Australian GP is getting harder and harder as alluded by the COTD. My earlier hopes started to dwindle yesterday after the article here.

    2. Yeah that Mallorca article is a bit bizarre…they obviously don’t have the means to host an F1 race this year, would probably take them years to do all the work to get them in a position to even apply for a chance to host one.

  6. It won’t be easy with Charles, or can it be closer between them?

    1. Dave (@davewillisporter)
      3rd January 2021, 13:38

      Not in qualifying! Charles is a qualifying God! Vettel needs a certain handling characteristic and he’s lightning quick. Charles has proved he can wrangle a dog of a car to a decent position. In the race it may be close between him and Sainz.

  7. I reckon Carlos as one of the top 5 present drivers (in no particular order: RIC, VES, RUS, SAI, PER), too bad he joined Ferrari at the worst possible moment, maybe he inherited his father’s jinx.

    BTW, in last year’s scirtem1f (word reversed) drivers ranking was 3rd, a hairbreadth from the HAM score (Max was first and way ahead)

    1. That’s PR talk for McLaren as the team had no objection letting Sainz talk to Ferrari and had been courting Ricciardo for years, so no doubt who they thought was the better driver.

      Sainz himself said his approach had been changed thanks to his stint at McLaren to being more of a team player, so I guess at the start McLaren wasn’t really won over when that was not his initial approach.

    2. If you really think SAI is top 5 while LEC isn’t, you’re in for a rough two years.

      1. Ok I should have got LEC in also, anyway I don’t think there too much of a difference between them, now we’ll see

    3. I don’t think he’s a top 5 driver, maybe top 7 or 8 though. Having said that, I feel like that is precisely why Ferrari are hiring him – because they see him as a solid driver, but not one that’s going to seriously challenge Leclerc over the course of a full season. They’ll get their ‘number 1 and number 2 driver’ pairing without much danger of on track friction like Seb/Leclerc had in 2019.

  8. Nah a top driver would have won at monza in his position

    1. Dave (@davewillisporter)
      3rd January 2021, 13:33

      @carlosmedrano that’s a bit harsh. He needed one more lap and he would have.
      Interesting though that Redbull have had a two year long second seat crisis meanwhile teams are haggling over a driver they just gave away and a driver they forced out through internal favouritism, meanwhile the driver they have chosen was forced out of his team by the driver that left Redbull disillusioned.
      If Sainz or Ricciardo was in the second seat I doubt Perez would have been needed.
      I wonder if Marco or Horner ever paused for thought on that one.

      1. @davewillisporter Or needed to get closer earlier.
        I agree with you on the last part about Sainz and Ricciardo at RB. They had the opportunity to use their option on Sainz when he was on-loan at Renault to take him as the direct replacement for Ricciardo after he left, but chose not to use that option and instead let him go altogether.

        1. @jerejj

          Sainz had quite a lacklustre season at Renault to be honest. Probably his least impressive since he’s entered the sport. Plus, Sainz also left the Red bull stable to join their sworn enemy .. Renault. I don’t blame Red Bull for terminating his contract as Gasly was looking mighty impressive at the end of 2018 and Sainz wasn’t.

          Red Bull also can’t blame themselves for Ricciardo moving. Once Dan found out Max was going to be their focus, he just decided to call it a day at that team. There was no way Dan would be able to beat Max with #1 driver treatment. Plus, the move to Honda power wasn’t very inspiring at the time.

          1. @todfod I agree with you on everything.

Comments are closed.