Carlos Sainz says that being on the back foot from the outset in the Australian Grand Prix led to his demise after just a single lap in a race in which he should have been fighting for a win in normal circumstances.
The Spaniard's weekend in Melbourne went from bad to worse in a poor case of Murphy's law, with the troubles he encountered on Saturday spilling into Sunday.
Starting on Pirelli's hard compound, Sainz launched his race from P9 on the grid although it was anything but a proper blast off for the Scuderia charger whose car went into anti-stall mode which in turn led to the F1-75 being engulfed by the field.
"We had similar problems with the switches in the car as yesterday," a frustrated Sainz recounted after the race. "Some switches not working.”
“We had to change the steering wheel one minute before the start, which meant the second steering wasn’t well configured for the start.
"I had the wrong start map setting, which was giving me anti-stall in both starts, which meant, unfortunately, we triggered anti-stall."
A disappointing end to Carlos Sainz's Sunday on Lap 1 😔
— Formula 1 (@F1) April 10, 2022
Sainz completed the first lap a lowly P14 but in his bid to regain the lost ground, the Ferrari driver attempted an over-enthusiastic move on Haas' Mick Schumacher at Turn 10 that sent him into the gravel trap.
"I was on the back foot and I tried to make up the places in the first three laps and I clearly made a mistake when the tyre was probably not ready to start overtaking," he explained.
"I misjudged the grip and I made a mistake which caused me the retirement.
“So clearly not perfect, I haven’t been perfect this weekend. We haven’t been perfect as a team, clearly, and we need to analyse what we did wrong and see if we can come back better."
Sainz reckoned that had he been spared the painful run of bad luck in Melbourne, he could have fought with teammate Charles Leclerc among the front-runners for an outright win.
"For sure this car, in the worst possible scenario today, was to do top four with a good comeback.
"Without the issues of yesterday, without the issues of today, we should have been on the fight for the win.
"So to go away with zero points is very disappointing. We need to be more perfect as a team and this weekend we clearly haven’t been."