Carlos Sainz is ready to make up for a frustrating qualifying session on Saturday, as he gave up the chance to achieve his first pole position in Canada.
It did seem that Max Verstappen of Red Bull was always one step ahead of the rest of the drivers throughout qualifying, however, Sainz was up on Verstappen after his first sector on his final lap in Q3.
But on the final corner he overcommitted and cost himself half a second, which then led to not only Verstappen taking pole but also his fellow Spaniard, Fernando Alonso, pipping him to second.
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This comes on a crucial weekend for Sainz and Ferrari as team-mate Charles Leclerc will be starting from the back of the grid after the planned changes to his engine setup.
Therefore, Sainz is now seen as the lead driver for this Canadian Grand Prix in Montreal and has the added pressure of needing to step up and keep pace with Red Bull in the Championship.
Sainz believes his attempt to take pole cost him dearly: ““I tried to get back that last tenth or two that Max had an advantage on us during the whole day really. I wanted to get it but in the end it cost me probably more than what I was going for but it’s how it is.
“Very good sector one then in sector two I started to feel the lap going away from me, and into sector three I decided to push really hard the last corner to see if we could get pole, it ended up costing me more than half a second.”
This is due to be a vital weekend in the Championship for Ferrari and Sainz himself as he currently sits fifth in the drivers standings, behind the struggling Mercedes of George Russell and team-mate Charles Leclerc.
Sainz is aware of how he needs to be aggressive and earn as many points as possible from the start tomorrow, if they are to maintain their title challenge with Red Bull.
He said: “It is important we can get behind Max as soon as possible. From there, try and really push Red Bull into a strategy or into something different. I think we have a good chance, we just need to make sure we get behind them as soon as possible if not pass them at the start.”
Ferrari will also be hoping for Leclerc to show his pace and climb up the positions pretty quickly if they are to maximise the amount of points they can achieve in Montreal.
Leclerc is rather optimistic despite the foreseen penalty he received this weekend: “We will try to make the best out of it tomorrow and then hopefully we can have no more reliability issues any more and focus on ourselves and catch the Red Bulls in the championship,” he told GPFans.
“It was a bit more difficult to overtake than I initially thought [in practice], but overall I think we’ve got quite a good pace in the car if we play it smart with the strategy, having some clean air, we can come back to P4 or something, so that is the goal and I’ll give it everything.”
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