Shanghai 'exposing McLaren's limitations', says Sainz

Carlos Sainz Jr (ESP) McLaren MCL34. 12.04.2019.
© XPB 

This weekend is proving to be a case of coming down to earth with a bump for McLaren drivers Carlos Sainz and Lando Norris.

Norris was the star of qualifying in Melbourne when he progressed all the way through to Q3. And the pair combined to get both MCL34s through to the final round last time out in Bahrain.

But this week proved to be a much tougher challenge, with neither driver escaping elimination at the end of Q2.

As a result, Sainz will start from 14th on the grid with Norris one row behind him in 15th place - very much not where either man had been hoping to end up.

“Quite disappointed today with P14," admitted Sainz. "But already in FP3 we saw that it was going to be very difficult to get into Q3."

He added that the team wasn't surprised to be experiencing difficulties this weekend in China.

"We knew coming into Shanghai that it was going to be a tough circuit for us and it was going to expose more our limitations," he said.

“However, I think we managed to put together a decent qualifying. Maybe I missed a tenth or tenth and a half on my last run, but overall I think I extracted pretty much all our potential from the car.

Carlos Sainz Jr (ESP) McLaren (Left) and team mate Lando Norris (GBR) McLaren (Right). 12.04.2019

"We’ll analyse and work on our weaknesses, and we’ll prepare ourselves for the race as best as possible."

Norris was also less than thrilled with his worst qualifying position of his fledgling F1 career, but determined not to be too downhearted about how the day had gone.

“Today was obviously not as good as the past two weekends but, on the whole, I don’t think it was horrendous," he said. "There’s still some work to do with the car.

Overall, there wasn’t a lot more to gain today: Carlos was quicker than me, but he wasn’t ahead of anyone else. I think he did a really good job of getting the most out of the car.

“This track just doesn’t suit our car, compared to the previous two," he added, echoing Sainz' own comments. "It’s just an area we have to work on.”

Gallery: The beautiful wives and girlfriends of F1 drivers

Keep up to date with all the F1 news via Facebook and Twitter