Sainz: I haven't joined Ferrari as second driver

By Sacha Pisani 3 June 2020 28
Sainz: I haven't joined Ferrari as second driver

Carlos Sainz said he is not joining Ferrari as the second driver and will give everything to succeed at the iconic Formula One team.

Sainz will drive for Ferrari from the 2021 F1 season after swapping McLaren to replace four-time world champion Sebastian Vettel next year.

The 25-year-old Sainz, who will team up with Charles Leclerc, made his F1 debut in 2015 and finished an impressive sixth in the drivers' standings for a resurgent McLaren last year.

Leclerc – contracted until 2024 – impressed in his first season with Ferrari last year, the Monegasque driver finishing fourth in the drivers' championship.

There has been suggestions Leclerc will become Ferrari's number one ahead of Sainz but the Spaniard insisted he will not arrive as the second driver.

"I have not signed anything that says second pilot," Sainz told COPE and Radio Marca. "In my contract it says, as in all those I have signed, that the team is above the pilot, but does not put anything second or support from anyone.

"What I know is that I will give everything for Ferrari and I will give everything they need, above all, to try to win. I do not care about the colour of the car.

"I treat all drivers equally, we are all rivals and we must go for all. If there is a complicated situation, I would make the right decision, don't worry."

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Sainz added: "I know that at Ferrari the pressure is higher. With thick skin you have to beat the Formula One teams. Ferrari is a step with more pressure, but I think I am prepared to do it."

On Leclerc, Sainz said: "We had a good relationship. He welcomed me and wanted to see us compete on the track.

"Charles is sensible and I think we are going to get along well. We will have to see it and it can be achieved."

In the meantime, Sainz has unfinished business at McLaren as the F1 season finally prepares to get underway following the coronavirus pandemic.

The opening eight races of the 2020 F1 season have been confirmed, with Spielberg and Silverstone hosting two each.

The campaign – provisionally slated to be held behind closed doors – will begin with the Austrian Grand Prix on July 5, with the teams remaining at the site for another event the following weekend.

"There is only one month left," Sainz said. "I have a desire ... I even want to get on the simulator, which I do not like. Imagine the desire I have ... I want to go to Austria, prepare now, feel those nerves and that pressure that when you have all your life doing it you get used to it and when it goes you miss it."

"I think they [McLaren] are going to tell me everything because I can still help them a lot in the remainder of the year and for next year," he continued.

"I have asked them, please, to keep me informed because I am the first to want to see McLaren on the podium as soon as possible, and I think I can honestly be of help to you just as I have been of help in the past year."

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Sacha Pisani

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