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Sainz denies sudden form surge as Ferrari improves strategy

Sainz denies sudden form surge as Ferrari improves strategy
© Reuters
Carlos Sainz has countered the idea that there has been a sudden upturn in his driving performance in 2024, coinciding with Ferrari's shift away from their previously flawed racing strategies.

Carlos Sainz has countered the idea that there has been a sudden upturn in his driving performance in 2024, coinciding with Ferrari's shift away from their previously flawed racing strategies.

Over the past year, internet memes have frequently lampooned Ferrari for their often catastrophically mishandled racing tactics.

Concurrently, some observers believe Sainz has significantly upped his game in the driver's seat just as Ferrari has decided to replace him for 2025, while he explores other team options.

The Spanish driver argues that both views are misconceptions.

"We just simply improved the car," the 29-year-old asserts. "The reality is just in Formula 1, the car is very important. Yes, I'm driving at a high level, but at the same time, having a car that just allows you to go a bit longer, allows you to be a bit closer in dirty air and play around a bit more with strategy, just allows you to shine a bit more. Last year in the races, we looked like we were always going backwards - always defending. But we were terrible with tyre management. It's a completely different picture now. We've improved everywhere," Sainz elaborated, "but especially in race pace. It allows us to have more strategic flexibility. It allows me to go forward in the races instead of looking in my mirrors all the time."

Nevertheless, he acknowledges that Ferrari has also made strides in areas beyond just pace and tyre management, such as honing their strategic decisions.

"But if you see a jump this year on strategy, it's purely down to the car," Sainz noted. "Last year, we were boxed in to stop at certain laps. We couldn't extend because we had so much (tyre) deg. We just couldn't do anything."

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Ferrari's Carlos Sainz ahead of the Saudi Arabian GP on March 6, 2024
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