Carlos Sainz threatens to quit Ferrari

Despite beating Ferrari darling Charles Leclerc in their first year racing together for the Scuderia, Carlos Sainz appears to be second favourite of the sons of the Scuderia.

Yet recently it has been Sainz who has been making his own pit stop calls given the woeful track record of the team’s strategy department.



Sainz calls his own strategy

It was Sainz who saved Ferrari’s Monaco Grand Prix last year by demanding he be allowed to stay on the extreme wet tyre before pitting straight to the dry slick. 

Leclerc who lead the race from pole position was pitted for the intermediate tyre and by the time the circuit had dried he had fallen back into fourth place behind the two Red Bull drivers.

Having claimed a front row start at the recent Spanish Grand Prix, Sainz was critical of the strategy calls made by the Scuderia.

The team decided to start the Spaniard on the soft tyre in the hope he might beat Verstappen into turn 1. The on lap 15 way before his main rivals in the Mercedes cars stopped for fresh rubber the team called Sainz in for his first pit stop.

New team into F1



Carlos angry: “What the f**k”

Sainz demanded, “Why?” On the radio only to discover Ferrari were m ore concerned with covering off the Alpine of Esteban Ocon and the Aston Martin of Lance Stroll.

It was the second race in a row where Sainz had questioned the team’s decision. In Monaco the team decided to cover off Hamilton but it meant Sainz came out behind the slower Alpine.

“What the f—! This is exactly what we talked about,” Sainz shouted over team radio. “I don’t care about Hamilton, I was quick!”

Both Ferrari drivers are contracted until the end of next season but recent widespread speculation suggested Sainz would be forced aside to accommodate the incoming Lewis Hamilton. 



Sainz linked with Audi move

Hamilton’s contract negotiations which Wolff stated in January should take just “a few hours” have been dragging on for seven months now.

Since the Hamilton to Ferrari rumours both Toto Wolff and Lewis Hamilton have stated they are close to the line, but Hamilton said in Canada “It’s more complicated than usual because it’s not just a simple driver contract.”

This presumably means Mercedes AMG F1 cannot sign off the deal alone and need the car manufacturers’ CEO to agree any terms.

Sainz recently has also been linked to a move to Audi in an all Spanish driver lineup for the German’s entry in 2026. Sauber’s Managing Director Alessandro Alunni Bravi said he’d “always sign” Alonso, the double World Champion.

Ferrari ‘civil war’ breaks out



Ferrari losing key staff

However Carlos reacted angrily to such rumours at the recent drivers’ press conference in Canada. 

“I honestly think there are weeks in F1 where there’s nothing to talk about,” said the 28-year-old.

“But I know by fact that right now, I’m not talking with anyone else that is not Ferrari.”

However all is not well behind the walls of the Maranello factory. The team has lost a number of senior personnel to other teams like McLaren and Aston Martin and Fred Vasseur admits its difficult to get people to relocate to Italy.

F1 boss “Perez not up to the job”



Scuderia struggle recruiting

“It’s not the same situation – you can move from Red Bull to Mercedes, keep the same hours, keep children in the same school and from the Friday to the Monday you can change and everything is perfect,” Vasseur told Sky Sports at the Canadian GP.

“If you want to come to Italy, it’s a different approach. You have to change the family environment and so on.

Having proved to be something of a challenge to Red Bull over the first third of last season, Ferrari have fallen way back and are now after just eight races 199 points behind the world champions.

However, it would be unusual for Ferrari to make a double driver change next season and so contract announcements should be forthcoming over the next month or two.




Ferrari poor this season

Sainz though has now threatened to quit Ferrari if they don’t get their act together on this front. 

“I’m not going to lie, I don’t like going into my last year of a contract without really knowing where I’m racing the next year,” he said.

“I went through that process both with Red Bull and Renault, and I know it’s not ideal as an athlete, and as a driver. It’s just not the right thing. And that’s why I have put this winter as a reference to try and figure out my future.”

Carlos claims he still has the passion to win for Ferrari though with a best finish of fourth in the season opener in Bahrain he has 68 points to Verstappen’s 195.

Wolff refuses Hamilton’s demands



Sainz threatens to quit Ferrari

“My priority, and my main goal, is to win one day with Ferrari. And I think I’ve made that clear, very, very often. And that’s why I will give my priority to them [until] this winter.

“If not, it will also be time to look elsewhere. But that’s my priority and what I want to sort out in the winter.”

Carlos is ahead of his team mate at present by fourteen points and it may be that Charles Leclerc is the one who force Ferrari into signing a new deal with Sainz.

Hill warns Hamilton against “playing with fire”



Monza key for Ferrari contracts

Leclerc will have been with Ferrari six years by the end of his current contract and may feel its time to move on and hope for championship glory with another team.

This would see Carlos in pole position for an extension to his contract as Ferrari would prefer not to replace both their current drivers at the same time.

All should be revealed by Ferrari’s traditional contract announcement venue in Monza , at the 2023 Italian Grand Prix.

READ MORE: Horner “not a fan of de Vries”

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