Carlos Sainz Jr, Ferrari, Silverstone, 2022

Sainz hails “very special day” after finally taking first win at 150th attempt

2022 British Grand Prix

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Carlos Sainz “could not ask for more” after claiming his maiden race victory in a dramatic British Grand Prix.

Sainz used fresh soft tyres to overtake team mate Charles Leclerc for the lead after a late Safety Car restart and pulled away from Sergio Perez to take the chequered flag and take his first grand prix win.

After waiting 150 races to step onto the top step of the podium for the first time, Sainz says he is “incredibly happy” to finally taste victory.

“I don’t know what to say,” said Sainz. “It’s amazing.

“First race win, 150 races later, with Ferrari, in Silverstone, I could not ask for more. It’s a very special day, a day that I will never forget, a very special weekend in general.”

Sainz had held off Max Verstappen at the initial restart following a long red flag period, but lost the lead after a mistake at Chapel on lap ten.

“It was not easy, said Sainz. “I struggled quite a bit with the balance, especially on the first stint with the medium tyre.

“Max was forcing us to push us quite a lot through the high speed, I opened the front left but even with all that I stayed believing that it could still happen.”

Sainz was running in second behind team mate Leclerc until a late Safety Car period due to Esteban Ocon stopping on the circuit. Leclerc was told to stay out, but Sainz pitted for soft tyres, resuming still in second place with a tyre advantage over his team mate.

“I needed to stay in the race,” Sainz explained. “I was trying to and then all of a sudden the Safety Car gave me the opportunity to get back on it and we did it.

“You can imagine the nerves on that Safety Car restart, knowing it was my chance and getting it done and then the win.”

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    Will Wood
    Will has been a RaceFans contributor since 2012 during which time he has covered F1 test sessions, launch events and interviewed drivers. He mainly...

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    30 comments on “Sainz hails “very special day” after finally taking first win at 150th attempt”

    1. Mark in Florida
      3rd July 2022, 18:28

      It’s great for Carlos but bad for Charles since Ferrari botched his pit strategy. Typical move from them though, they never seem to get it right do they? Maybe they were waiting for the strategists to call them and give them the best computed odds for outcome. Amazingly Ross Brawn used to call strategy right off the top of his head. The old famous ( Michael I need you to run qualifying speed for the next 20 laps to make a clean pitstop).
      Oh to see the days of complete competence from them again. Congratulations to Carlos its been a long time coming. I’m especially happy he ignored that incompetent call to hold up the cars behind him. That scene of Binotto wagging his finger in Charles face said volumes about the situation in the team. Now listen Charles don’t tell people how incompetent we are I think they can figure it out for themselves. Charles doesn’t have to lose the championship, Ferrari will do that for him.

      1. Did not understand the radio part, Binotto asked SAI to hold up the cars behind him or give LEC some room at the restart (by bunching up the cars behind him)?? I just got the part with “10 cars length” and that SAI did not agree with their ideas. Thing is, I’m not convinced SAI wouldn’t have managed to keep behind PER and HAM, but it could be he did not want to obey the orders since that indirectly would have meant to settle for 2nd and let LEC win… although he obviously had better tyres, therefore the chance to beat LEC on merit. Kinda doubt BOT or PER would have disobeyed the orders and attacked their team mates. In my humble opinion, Ferrari just got another Barrichello, but it’s not impossible to get rid of him for 2023.

    2. Pity Charles. He was shorthanded by his own team?

    3. Congrats to Carlos, also good for him thinking for himself and overruling the team like he did in Monaco as well. Can’t help but feel he is going to be like Perez though and only get an occasional win when something goes very wrong for his direct competitors.

    4. IfImnotverymuchmistaken
      3rd July 2022, 18:38

      When Leclec extended his contract with Ferrari, I said Ferrari made a great deal, but wondered if Leclerc made a good deal signing for Ferrari. Both questions got answered today, and the answer is not the same one.

      1. So he’d be better where?

        1. If Audi/Volks are really coming to F1, LEC is soon receive a call from them – he might be open to talk.

          1. That is really far away and it looks Red Bull is getting those engines Porche/VW atleast. But at this time we don’t know if they (Audi/Vw) are going to start a own team ….

        2. IfImnotverymuchmistaken
          3rd July 2022, 19:20

          I guess that depends if you prefer false hope at Ferrari, or no hope at all. Ferrari have already started on their finest post-Brawn era tradition of going backwards in car development, and/or silly, rookie mistakes in strategy, and thing are only going to get worse as the cars evolve season to season, at least until the next major rule change.
          That beeing said, it’s true that top team driver spots are scarce, and most top teams prefer a clear no1 driver de facto, if not de iure. But Ferrari are profiling themselves as the worst option for a great driver.
          This season is his best chance of winning a WDC for Ferrari, and the WCC for Ferrari themselves, but they do seem to be actively trying to shoot themselves in the foot. Would RB or Mercedes make so many such mistakes? Do they? Did they ever?

    5. Congrats to Ferrari for binning the championship.

      1. I think there is a typo: isnt it “binnotoing” the championship?

    6. Really happy for Carlos Sainz for getting the win finally and in a great race too. OK Leclerc looked faster in the race but he was also kind of scrappy in his wheel-to-wheel racing. Plus Sainz showed how good he is on wet tracks in qualifying and deserved pole.

      1. OK Leclerc looked faster in the race but he was also kind of scrappy in his wheel-to-wheel racing.

        When?? When PER turned into him??

        1. he means when Charles crashed into Perez as 3 cars in that turn is too much!

    7. Good for CArlos, but the 3rd – 4th with one considers Perez effort – best driver won today.
      Lost the first start, botched the lead after the second, went so slow that exposed both ferraris to HAM approach.

    8. petebaldwin (@)
      3rd July 2022, 18:56

      Good for Sainz but the reality is this weekend wasn’t any different to the rest of the season other than he got extremely lucky this time. He was quite a bit slower than Leclerc and made important mistakes.

      Ferrari cost Leclerc 13 points in the fight against Max.. When Leclerc has issues, Max wins. This was a chance to get back in the fight and they screwed it up.

      1. @petebaldwin Spot-on everything.
        The 13 (or 14 with bonus point) points gifted away via not pitting under SC neutralization in a difficult race for Max could prove crucial with their gap only reducing by 6 pts rather than 17 or 18.
        Insult to injury, Red Bull Ring has been Max’s territory, so I reckon he might be quite unchallengeable there.

        1. Dutchguy (@justarandomdutchguy)
          4th July 2022, 0:10

          I would not be so sure of that. the one time leclerc has had competative material at the RB ring he gave Verstappen such a challenge that the latter only got past with a move that kept the stewards busy for the rest of the afternoon

          1. Difference is now the topspeed of the Red Bull is much higher so outdragging is not going to happen. (looks at the first attemp he was pass LeClerc but he could over take Max easy..

    9. I am convinced that had it not been for the SC, Ferrari would have lost this to Hamilton. Leclerc was faster than Sainz, despite the damage but had lost much time behind him and used a lot of his Hards in the process.

      However, once the SC was called, pitting Leclerc was a no-brainer. They even could have tried to change his front wing (that would tough time-wise I know because of Hamilton behind, but even if they did not tried that they would be 1st & 3rd in the worst scenario with their WDC´s contender still on the top spot when the race was restarted.

      Ferrari can win races but they cannot win either of the championships this year. Could be close between Mercedes and Red Bull for WCC.

      1. @Kotrba Merc is too far behind in points to join the WCC battle anymore, but Ferrari indeed can’t win either championship at this rate if they keep on gifting away achievable points.

        1. 120 points between two drivers in not that much. Mercedes is improving and its drivers combined are stronger than Red Bull duo. Reliability on the Mercedes also seems second to none.

          It is optimistic, but after today I believe they are in the hunt.

          1. IfImnotverymuchmistaken
            3rd July 2022, 19:27

            I think Merc have a good chance to catch up to Ferrari, but RB is far away, and I doubt Merc is the more frugal spender in the development race.
            I think in the end, both RB and Merc will reach/brake the money ceiling, but it will be too late for Ferrari to recover if they continue to squander points while still the fastest qualifiers, and second fastest race car.

    10. Jonathan Parkin
      3rd July 2022, 19:13

      I’m glad Zhou managed to walk away from his crash, but the aftermath is another demonstration of why I don’t like modern F1

      Back in the day prior to 2007, if there was a crash on Lap 1, it was a fresh start with all competitors starting the race from their original grid position in their spare or repaired cars. The clock would stop, be reset and begin again when the first car crossed the line after the lights went out

      Contrast this to what we have now. We don’t stop and reset the clock and we have to make everyone stand around like cough drops to determine the order of the restart if everybody passed a certain line on the track

      I can still remember the old procedures from years gone by because they were simple, easy to understand and easy to remember.

      Now they aren’t. This weekend we’ve had a driver starting 10th with the slowest qualifying time, drivers who qualified 16-20 with faster times than their competitors starting in 11-15 and a race winner whose winning time is artificially inflated because we don’t stop a clock

      1. I hear you mostly, but I think that the qualifying system is the best F1 has ever had.

        Back in the day they had qualis on fri & sat and one or the other session was always faster and so the other was useless. Then they changed to 1 quali on sat, but still all the action was at the end of the hour. For the first 45 mins we used to watch nothing happening except the slower teams have a go. Yesterday the fastest laps would have been driven in the first 15-20 minutes and after that not much meaningful action would’ve happened for the rest of the time.

    11. Leclerc starts to feel what Vettel experienced.

      1. Unfortunately.

      2. And Vettel is quiet happy at the moment….

      3. They should go even more 90s with FIAT as a sponsor. They both have made one good thing in the past years (drivers-new 500) and the rest is forgettable.

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