Carlos Sainz Jnr, Ferrari, Red Bull Ring, 2023

Red Bull have “killed the opposition” in year since Ferrari’s last win – Sainz

2023 Austrian Grand Prix

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Carlos Sainz Jnr admitted its been a “tough” year for Ferrari since they scored their most recent victory, at the scene of this weekend’s race.

Charles Leclerc scored the Scuderia’s last win at the Red Bull Ring, almost a full year ago. Sainz said it’s “been a long year” for the team since then.

“From Austria last year ’til now, it’s been tough. We had a bit of a dip in form towards the end of last year in race pace, and then we carried that difficult moment into this year and we are in exactly the turning point or in the point of where we are trying to turn things around to make the car competitive again and to try and win again.”

All bar one of the 19 grands prix since Ferrari’s last win have been won by Red Bull, and Sainz acknowledged Ferrari face a formidable task in getting back on terms with them.

“It’s not going to be easy because there’s another team called Red Bull that have killed everyone, killed the opposition in a way, and we are not the only ones suffering it,” he said. “There’s teams also like Mercedes that have suffered [from] their good job and it’s down to us now to reverse it and to try our best to win again.”

Ferrari introduced a significant change to its car at the Spanish Grand Prix earlier this month. Sainz believes the team is beginning to show signs of improving its pace and said his and Leclerc’s climb to the top five in the last race, in which each made up six places, shows the gains they are making.

“I think it was a good boost for the whole team, mainly looking at the race pace,” he said. “After a couple of difficult races where we were struggling with race pace finally, in Canada, we seemed to have good race pace.

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Ferrari SF-23 front wings, Red Bull Ring, 2023
Gallery: First pictures from the 2023 Austrian Grand Prix
“Also, the fact that we were going forward in the race and not going backwards makes a bit of a difference also for the perception of things because we actually finished fourth and fifth, these are very similar results [to] the other race weekends that we’ve had. But the perception the way that we were on the pace there, the pace was definitely different, which was good news and a boost of motivation for the whole team.”

The team will introduce more new parts this weekend which it ran on its car in a filming day at its Fiorano test track earlier this week. Sainz expects they will prove “another step in the right direction.”

“The team back in Maranello has done an incredible effort to bring them forward to this race,” said Sainz. “I cannot thank enough the people back in Maranello with the extra hours that everyone’s put in to try and reverse the situation.

“Trying to put those extra minutes, extra hours of work to make these parts arrive, it’s been a huge effort by everyone and from here I wanted to congratulate them and tell them that we’re going to do our best to make them work well. Hopefully they are all worth it and we can be competitive this weekend.”

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2023 Austrian Grand Prix

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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...
Claire Cottingham
Claire has worked in motorsport for much of her career, covering a broad mix of championships including Formula One, Formula E, the BTCC, British...

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7 comments on “Red Bull have “killed the opposition” in year since Ferrari’s last win – Sainz”

  1. This GP will be a good opportunity for someone to win instead of Max. These spint weekends have only one practice session to find your setup.

    1. These two last races Red Bull didn’t win were just off weekends in which they couldn’t click with the tyres. Even Mercedes had these every once in a while in their dominating years.

      1. sorry, it wasn’t meant as a reply.

      2. True, brazil was just horrible for them and in austria I think leclerc overtook verstappen thrice because of the tyres and in the end verstappen came back close because leclerc had a problem in the car, so it was still a close one despite red bull’s tyre problems.

  2. Red Bull didn’t kill the opposition last year, Totos technical directive did.

  3. You might say RB killed the competition in 2022 of any other team, but Ferrari definately committed suicide.

  4. Not Red Bulls fault though is it. The other teams need to have a really good look at themselves.

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