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Sainz doesn’t expect podium finish in Azerbaijan

Carlos Sainz in Monaco. Credits: Scuderia Ferrari (Twitter: @ScuderiaFerrari).

As the Formula One grid is preparing for the Azerbaijan Grand Prix, Carlos Sainz admitted not expecting Ferrari to be as strong as they were in Monaco. However, the Spaniard still sees some good opportunities for the Scuderia to score important points.

Two weeks ago, Ferrari surprised the motorsport world, showing an astonishing pace around the streets of Monaco after struggling to consistently score points during the 2020 season. 

This leap forward was a true morale boost for the Maranello-based team that will now definitely look forward to furthering podium finishes on similar low-speed tracks such as Singapore or Hungary.

Nonetheless, as the F1 paddock is currently taking shape in Baku, the upcoming Grand Prix weekend seems worrying for Ferrari considering the amount and the size of straight lines on the track and the recent lack of straight-line speed the Italian team has showcased.

Ferrari’s Monaco hero, Sainz admitted not expecting an exceptional performance from the Scuderia this weekend. However, the Spaniard does not see the situation as bad as some people suggested, considering the high technicity of the track and the number of low-speed corners which could give them some opportunities if they managed to find the right car balance, just like they did in Monaco.

“Monaco is a high-downforce circuit, you need mechanical grip, you need a good balance and to see that we were one of the best, if not the best at that, it was definitely encouraging and you can feel it in the atmosphere in the team and it’s good to see,” Sainz said.

“It’s another street race but it has completely different characteristics. Baku is so tricky. You have all these very long straights. I think we spend two kilometers flat-out.”

“We know that that is still a bit of a weakness for us in terms of top speed and acceleration, so we know that that is going to put us immediately a bit on the back foot going into the weekend.”

“But at the same time, if we manage to get the car working well in the slow corners like we did in Monaco, we can still maybe be decently competitive nothing close to Monaco, because Monaco I think it’s a bit of a one-off, a bit of a special case scenario, but we’re still going to try and score some good points this weekend and keep improving as a team.”

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