Sainz: I gave it my all to pass the Red Bull

Carlos Sainz came as close as ever to winning his first ever Formula 1 race in Canada on Sunday, but could not get through Max Verstappen’s Red Bull despite giving it his all.

Sainz was the only Ferrari driver fighting at the front for the Reds in the 2022 Canadian Grand Prix, as Charles Leclerc was starting from 19th down the grid having taken a new power unit after the last one went out in smoke in Baku a week earlier.

Sainz drove a strong race, while Ferrari’s strategy was helped by late Safety Car caused by Yuki Tsunoda’s crash, as it set up the Spaniard for a final sprint to the flag chasing Verstappen down on fresh rubber over 20 laps or so.

But the Sainz could not make a move stick on the Dutchman who soaked up the pressure and held on for the win.

Sainz said after the race: “That was a solid race and an intense battle with Max (Verstappen) to the line. The pace was very good during the entire race, but unfortunately we lost the lead after the last Safety Car.

“From there, I gave it my all to pass the Red Bull, but to overtake here you need a bit more than two or three extra tenths,” he lamented.

“Even though I’m disappointed at not getting the win, there are many positives to take from Canada,” Sainz went on. “We were the fastest on track today and I felt much better in the car, being able to push constantly throughout the race.

“Now we need to build momentum and carry this feeling onto the next race. Next stop, Silverstone,” he concluded.

Leclerc: It never feels good to finish in P5

One can on ponder how the situation would’ve panned out had it been Leclerc chasing down Verstappen in those final laps, but the Monegasque was fighting his own war in the midfield trying to secure as many points as possible, on a day where a win was simply beyond reach.

“I gave it my all,” Leclerc said. “It never feels good to finish in P5, but considering where we started and the way that the race unfolded, it was the best result we could bring home today.

“The first part of the race was quite frustrating, as we were stuck behind a DRS train, so it was all about practicing patience,” he explained. “After our pit stop, we came back out behind another DRS train and started fighting our way back up.

“This part was much more fun, because I had to be aggressive enough to make it work. It was just one of those races where you had to maximize the points and that’s exactly what we did today.

“I’m looking forward to Silverstone now. It’s one of my favorite circuits on the calendar and hopefully we can score some big points there,” the Monegasque concluded.

Canada was always going to be a case of damage limitation

Mattia Binotto, the Scuderia’s team boss, reflected in his team’s weekend in Canada and said: “We came into this weekend knowing it would be a case of damage limitation, given we would have a car at the back of the grid.

“We came away from it having closed the gap slightly in the Constructors’ classification, after a race that demonstrated that reliability problems can affect everyone in the current Formula 1,” he added referring to Sergio Perez’s gearbox failure.

“We have some of these issues and, back in Maranello, we are working flat out to fix them definitively,” Binotto admitted.

“Charles did his very best, making up 14 places from the back row to finish fifth. Carlos drove a great race, which demonstrated just how much confidence he now has in the car.

“Now we head to Silverstone, where we expect our rivals to introduce some updates, but we certainly intend to be competitive there,” the Swiss-born Italian concluded.

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