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Ferrari nonetheless in hunt for extra F1 wins regardless of Pink Bull’s Suzuka dominance, says Sainz

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The Spaniard arrived at Suzuka in a buoyant temper after main team-mate Charles Leclerc to a 1-2 end on the Australian GP, and hopes had been excessive of a powerful exhibiting in qualifying after some promising long-run kind in apply.

Nonetheless, Ferrari endured a tougher time within the combat for grid positions, as Sainz ended up fourth on the grid – 0.485 seconds adrift of pole place man Max Verstappen. Leclerc certified eighth.

And whereas that hole to the entrance has highlighted simply how far more progress Ferrari must make earlier than it may possibly take into account itself a correct challenger to Pink Bull, he thinks that it’s a track-specific phenomenon that has been uncovered right here.

Requested by Autosport if the weekend had been a actuality test for the place Ferrari actually stood towards Pink Bull, Sainz stated: “Yeah. However we’ll combat for wins in different tracks.

“We’ll possibly go to the Monzas or the Singapores, and Miami possibly, and we’re nonetheless within the combine, you already know, for [the victory]. However there’s different tracks the place the Pink Bull is simply merely a a lot better bundle.

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“As I stated within the press convention [on Thursday], till we develop this automobile for this type of monitor, they are going to be three-tenths to half a second forward. So it’s time to place our heads down and attempt to carry a superb bundle to assist at this form of monitor.”

Sainz defined that he by no means anticipated Ferrari to shine at Suzuka, with the circuits’s high-speed swoops placing a premium on the sort of aero efficiency that Pink Bull’s RB20 is so sturdy at.

Photograph by: Mark Sutton / Motorsport Images

“That is why yesterday I used to be attempting to carry everybody down a bit – as a result of I knew that being one second away final yr [was not going to be wiped away this year],” he defined.

“I do know that we did not enhance one second the automobile from final yr to this yr in a spot like Suzuka, so it was going to be all the time tough.

“However I am very proud of how the automobile feels this yr. It is a step higher. We simply must do one other step on this form of monitor. Anyway, I did some very clear, good laps at the moment, that put me P4, which is an efficient place to combat tomorrow.”

However in addition to Pink Bull being clearly in entrance, Sainz reckoned that Suzuka had proven that McLaren too had an edge at high-speed venues.

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“It is clear that within the form of lengthy high-speed corners, the Pink Bull and McLaren are nonetheless a step forward of us,” he added. “A transparent step forward of us.

“However hopefully tomorrow we will combat for the rostrum. I feel within the race, Pink Bull are nonetheless out of attain. However with the McLaren hopefully, we could be a bit nearer within the race.”

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