Sainz laments missed opportunity

By on
F1 Grand Prix, GP Bahrain, Bahrain International Circuitbh

While team mate Max Verstappen scored Toro Rosso's first ever points at Bahrain, Carlos Sainz lamented a missed opportunity after he failed to finish the race following car damage from an accident in the first lap.

“What a shame to have had to retire", said Sainz.

"It was looking like a race where we could’ve certainly scored points, and it all just ended in a first-lap accident. We had a very good start to the race – obviously everyone in front of us was on the Super Soft tyre while we started on Softs, but we still managed to gain a few places, so that was good.

"We were fighting and I was defending from a McLaren and Checo Perez, who suddenly arrived from behind and hit me, causing a puncture. From that point onwards my race was completely lost, as I was a lap down after my first pit-stop. Now we just need to put this behind us and look forward to the next race in China in two weeks’ time, where we will come back stronger - we know that we have a good car and we can be fast.”

Toro Rosso team principal Franz Tost explained the team called Sainz in to retire as there was no chance he would end up in a points scoring position.

“Unfortunately, Carlos had a collision with Perez, which caused a puncture on the right-rear tyre at the beginning of his lap", said Tost.

"As a result of this, while driving back to the pits, the floor also got damaged… We therefore ended up deciding to call him in, even though originally we made him stay out just in case there was a Safety Car period. This never happened so we ended his race prematurely as the car was very unstable in the rear because of the amount of downforce we had lost."

Tost underlined that while today's race wasn't expected to be one of Toro Rosso's stronger ones, China is, so it's possible a better result can be achieved there.

"On a more positive note, this is the first time we score points here in Bahrain, so we can be happy with this, and we now look forward to China, where we expect to be quite competitive.”