Frustrating first-corner incident “put me on the back foot for the race” – Sainz

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In the round-up: Carlos Sainz Jnr said he was frustrated by the first-corner incident at the Mexico City Grand Prix, which he says cost him places at the start.

In brief

Sainz “frustrated” by turn one incident

Sainz arrived at the first corner ahead of Charles Leclerc, but fell behind his team mate as they reacted to the collision between Daniel Ricciardo and Valtteri Bottas.

“From my side, going into turn one, I’m right behind Daniel and Pierre [Gasly], Daniel crashes into Bottas, I’m on the inside of turn one, so I have no possibility to cut turn two like Charles and Gasly and Perez do,” Sainz explained.

“So I am committed to having to do the whole track in turn two. And then actually Daniel without front wing doesn’t even turn into turn two, so I need to turn cut three.”

As well as falling behind his team mate, Sainz was also passed by Antonio Giovinazzi. “In hindsight, honestly, I’m a bit frustrated with the situation because I feel like I’ve been a victim of a whole mess that I had nothing to do with and it made me lose a couple of positions that I shouldn’t have lost,” said Sainz.

“But like always turn one you sometimes are lucky, sometimes are unlucky, and I lost positions that, to be honest, I shouldn’t have lost and put me on the back foot for the race. But we managed to recover with good pace and I’ll try to take that on the positive side.”

Home podium “extremely special” for Perez

“One of those days that I must enjoy” – Perez
Sergio Perez said being the first Mexican driver to finish on the podium at his home race, after taking third place on Sunday, was an “extremely special” moment.

“Obviously I wanted more, I wanted to win the race and obviously to finish one-two for the team would have been amazing,” he said. “But at the end of the day, we are such competitive persons that if we finish third, we really, really don’t enjoy it.

“But today is one of those days that I must enjoy because the crowd and seeing so many people so happy, and especially on the podium, everyone who has been with me since day one was on the podium, so that was extremely special for me.”

Hamilton clarifies Perez and Bottas comments

Hamilton wasn’t impressed by Bottas’ first-lap tactics
Lewis Hamilton took to social media to clarify remarks he made about Sergio Perez following Sunday’s Mexico City Grand Prix.

While describing Red Bull’s performance advantage in the race, Hamilton said: “It just shows how fast their car is when Sergio’s that close behind me and able to follow that closely.” Hamilton said on Monday wanted to “make sure people don’t read what I was saying wrong yesterday.”

“I have a lot of respect for [Checo] and think he’s doing a great job in his new team. He’s improved so much this season and I know how hard it is to progress with a new team, it takes time.

“My comment was simply that following another car in Mexico is the hardest thing due to the low drag we all have. That’s why there is very little overtaking. However, he was able to follow so closely which highlights just how much more downforce they were able to carry. Big up Checo for keeping it clean.”

In a later post Hamilton also referred to his criticism of Valtteri Bottas’ driving at the start of the race, having said his team mate “left the door open for Max” at the start.

“We all have bad days,” Hamilton wrote. “We live and we learn. Yesterday I said that [Valtteri Bottas] left the door open and naturally people will jump to criticise.

“We are a team and we win and we lose as a team. There is not one single person responsible for winning or losing, we do it together good or bad. You may be able to beat us but you can’t break us!”

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Comment of the day

Daniel Ricciardo’s collision with Valtteri Bottas wasn’t the result of a desperate lunge, says @Petebaldwin:

At the point he committed to the corner and brakes, Hamilton was still on the inside and Bottas was in the middle. He wouldn’t have expected Bottas to take that space on the apex of the corner. Bottas was entitled to do it but it was too late for Ricciardo to back out as he’d already braked late – any more pressure and he’d have locked up and taken more cars out.

Ricciardo was a bit optimistic going into the corner and Bottas was a bit optimistic that he could take the line he did. Unfortunately both gambled on that part of the track being clear and it wasn’t.

Happy birthday!

Happy birthday to George, Adrian Hancox and Cristofer Lima!

On this day in motorsport

  • 35 years ago today Bobby Rahal clinched the CART Indycar championship in the final round at Tamiami Park in Miami after rival Michael Andretti retired with a driveshaft failure. Al Unser Jnr won the race.

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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11 comments on “Frustrating first-corner incident “put me on the back foot for the race” – Sainz”

  1. Many thanks for the birthday shout out @keithcollantine

    1. happy birthday!

    2. Congrats!

      1. Thanks Mayrton

  2. Coventry Climax
    9th November 2021, 12:11

    Instead of being more lenient with lap1, turn 1 incidents, they could just as well start being ruthless with penalties, as, with still all of the race to go, it makes no sense at all to take such risks, and it is unforgivable to ruin someone elses race at this point. I’m convinced drivers will cope with whatever rules are set.
    As for cutting the corners, this is what Alonso was talking about – and proved. Please put track limits back where they belong: between the white lines alongside the black stuff of the entire circuit. And of course there’s still the need to judge the severity of a penalty if someone is clearly forced off, or taking -justified, not faked- evasive action. And at least try to get some consistency here please.

    1. someone or something
      9th November 2021, 12:36

      Instead of being more lenient with lap1, turn 1 incidents, they could just as well start being ruthless with penalties, as, with still all of the race to go, it makes no sense at all to take such risks

      Quick reality update: The first lap, first corner is the one moment when it makes sense to take all the risks. Did you see any overtakes between cars that weren’t severely out of position? Best example I can think of is Leclerc on Giovinazzi, and the fact that I had to resort to a Ferrari vs. Sauber overtake pretty much tells you everything you needed to know. On many days, 90% of the race result is shaped by the order in which the cars emerge from the first corner. There is nothing irrational about taking more risks there than at any other stage of the race.

      1. +1
        Not sure I’d want to watch F1 if drivers didn’t go for these moves.
        I think Bottas has to accept some of the blame too, he was still the leading car at the 100m marker and carrying less speed into the corner, so should have been later on the brakes and pushed Verstappen wider but instead he tried to pull in behind Hamilton and drops another half car length, he should have been well clear of the corner before Dan got there.

  3. There is always something with Sainz. Didnt stand out at Toro Rosso, neither at McLaren. Behind in the ranking on Charles.

  4. Constantijn Blondel
    9th November 2021, 13:21

    +1 for HAM clarifying his comments on Perez and Bottas.

    I mean, I got what he meant the first time (and I hope y’all here did, too), but it’s a nice gesture of him to remove any doubt, and put out any fires before people can fan them more.

  5. I saw no evil in Ham’s comment on Perez, he was clearly stating that rb could run very close however he confirmed that he thinks bottas left the door open. Bottas was not the only merc max passed on the outside. Like i said yesterday, nobody was braking where Max broke as it was too dusty.

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