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  • Reese Mautone

Teamwork Makes The Dream Work

Updated: Nov 4, 2021

Saturday's qualifying session in Turkey revealed the advantage of teammates united in their vision of success.


Ferrari maximised their opportunities despite the setback of starting P20 due to a total power unit change for Carlos Sainz, to achieve P3 with Charles Leclerc. Though the weather was far from the desired conditions for the team, it added to the excitement for fans and spectators lucky enough to be at the Intercity Istanbul Park this weekend. The cold and wet climate made tyre temperature a hot topic. Many cars struggled to get their intermediates and slick tyres up to temperature resulting in lockups and often spins, impacting flying laps and tyre life throughout the qualifying session.

"If the conditions are dry, I am confident that we have good potential." - Charles Leclerc, post-qualifying.

One of only a few teams lucky enough to have maximised their opportunities, Ferrari, in contempt of Sainz's grid penalty for a new Ferrari power unit upgrade, achieved P4 with Charles Leclerc in qualifying. The Monegasque's P4 was ultimately boosted to P3 as a result of Lewis Hamilton's 10-place grid penalty for an engine change, becoming his 5th second row start in 2021.


Leclerc's lap called for high praises.


"It wasn’t easy managing all the variables today, starting with the weather and the choices to be made in terms of levels of aero downforce, especially for Charles," Ferrari's Racing Director Laurent Mekies said, "He did a great job, keeping calm even when the situation looked complicated and then he pulled it out of the bag in the end with a wonderful lap."


Not only was Leclerc's time good enough for 4th fastest, but it was also ahead of Ferrari's rivals in the Constructor's Championship, Mclaren, who in which they sit 17.5 point behind. Lando Norris qualified P8, being promoted up to P7 by Hamilton's penalty, and Daniel Ricciardo qualified P16 also being promoted one place due to Sainz's PU penalty. The promotion is ironic in the way that Sainz's time was the cause for the Australian's Q1 exit from the session, Ricciardo's second this season after Portugal.


Ferrari's strategy was carefully orchestrated and perfectly executed.


"In Q1 we took calculated risks to make it comfortably into Q2, bumping one car out which turned out to be a McLaren", Sainz explained, "Then in Q2 I stayed in the garage and went out on a perfectly timed strategy to help Charles with a bit of a slipstream on his Mediums."


"It was great to see Carlos being there and giving me the slipstream on the final straight in Q2. It was good teamwork and helped us make it to Q3", Leclerc added, acknowledging the important role his teammate played in obtaining a second row start in the Turkish GP. Simply putting it, without the slipstream from the Spaniard, Leclerc could have been looking at a start potentially lower down in the top 10, as well as closely competing with not one, but both of their rival's cars without the support of a teammate.



Although unhappy with his own circumstances, Sainz's selfless demonstration in Saturday's qualifying session benefitted the Italian team in their hunt for P3 in the Constructor's Championship against Mclaren. Knowingly, points are scored on Sundays. If Brazil, 2019 told us anything about Carlos Sainz as a driver, it's that P20 to a podium is definitely a possibility.


Don't count the Spaniard out for a healthy haul of points at the checkered flag, taking into account the conditions and the competition.

"Bring it On!" - Carlos Sainz
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