Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz had an overwhelmingly negative reaction to his team’s performance in the Sao Paulo Grand Prix weekend, as a plethora of issues blighted the Scuderia’s efforts.

The Spaniard opened his account with the fastest time in free practice following a qualifying simulation, but that pace didn’t fully translate into Friday afternoon’s qualifying session – which was affected by adverse weather conditions – and Sainz could only muster the eighth fastest time.

Sainz’s weekend continued with ninth in the Sprint Shootout, followed by eighth in the Sprint.

Then in Sunday’s Grand Prix, a poor getaway did nothing to aid the Spaniard’s run to a sixth-place finish, with a troublesome clutch chief amongst his concerns to such an extent that he wished to “bin it” over team radio.

“Same as yesterday and the same as every single start that I’ve done this weekend,” Sainz said of his clutch on Sunday.

“So I’m very disappointed because it obviously cost us probably some points.

“We had a problem since the beginning of practice.

“We haven’t been able to really tune it and adapt it to the track and we’ve been struggling a lot with the getaways and yeah it’s a shame.”

However, Sainz was keen to stress that he hoped the issue was a one-off and more a parts issue than anything long-term, given that he stressed Ferrari had “been a very good starter all year.”

Sainz wasn’t the only Ferrari driver to experience issues toward the start of Sunday’s GP, with Charles Leclerc plagued by an even greater issue.

A hydraulic failure on the formation lap saw Leclerc career into the barriers and out of the race, which Sainz rightly believes had a profound impact on Ferrari’s overall chances in Brazil.

“It’s a shame because I think with Charles in the race it would have been a great opportunity to take away points from Mercedes this weekend,” he said.

“But yeah, also the car pace wasn’t great either.

“So Aston, McLaren and Red Bull were a bit in front and we couldn’t really fight them much.

“So yeah, a missed opportunity I think.”

Carlos Sainz Jr (ESP) Ferrari SF-23 and Lance Stroll (CDN) Aston Martin F1 Team AMR23 battle for position. 05.11.2023. Formula 1 World Championship, Rd 21, Brazilian Grand Prix, Sao Paulo, Brazil, Race Day. –, EMail: © Copyright: Charniaux / XPB Images

A 17th win of the season for Max Verstappen, another runner-up sport for McLaren’s Lando Norris, along with both Aston Martin’s and Sergio Perez completing the top-five meant Sainz was unable to trouble the higher scoring places come race day.

Given Mercedes’ struggles – namely a retirement for George Russell and Lewis Hamilton’s poor pace en route to eighth – meant the Scuderia couldn’t make a significant inroad on the one rival they had the better of over the weekend.

Compounding things further for Sainz was one more technical issue that reared its head toward the end of the GP, that of downshifts, but the Spaniard said it was nothing major.

“Yeah we had a sticky paddle shift problem, we’ve had it before, but it was not a big reliability issue.”

With the Sao Paulo GP bringing an end to an F1 triple-header, Sainz and Ferrari have been offered a temporary reprieve and with it time to investigate the myriad of issues they encountered in Brazil.

November 16-18 in Las Vegas will provide the first of two more chances in 2023 for Sainz and his team to have a positive weekend.

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