Carlos Sainz says he was left “angry” with his end result at the Singapore Grand Prix, after the Toro Rosso driver failed to capitalise on his strong qualifying performance.
Coming off a trio of difficult races for the Red Bull junior team, the Spaniard was eyeing a return to the points-paying positions after setting the sixth fastest time in last Saturday’s pole position shootout.
Sainz’ night contest unravelled from the onset though, with the 22-year-old having to swerve right to avoid the slow-starting Max Verstappen ahead of him. As a consequence, Sainz tagged Force India’s Nico Hulkenberg and was later forced to pit in order to remove a loose piece of bodywork, which dropped him at the back of the field.
“I’m angry after [last Sunday]’s race, especially after having qualified in P6,” the Toro Rosso ace said. “The race didn’t start well, as I had to avoid Max when the lights went out and, while doing that, a Force India suddenly came flying by and we collided. He took the worst part and I took the second worst part, damaging the right-hand side of my car.
“However, we still had decent pace after this and we were fighting for points, but we were forced to stop early as we were shown the black and orange flag and we re-joined the race behind too much traffic…”
Sainz’s difficult evening continued when his STR11 picked a technical issue that hampered his recovery. Despite the missed opportunity, the Spaniard was able to find solace in his team’s improved all-around pace at Marina Bay Circuit.
“Halfway through the race, we had a problem with the Energy Recovery System and I had to run to the end trying to do the best I could. Days like today are very frustrating – nothing went right and when you have these kind of opportunities – starting P6 at a circuit like Singapore – you need to make sure you take them and we didn’t.
“But I stay positive: the level of performance we’ve shown this weekend has been amazing and points would’ve certainly been possible. It’s time to look forward to the next two races in Malaysia and Japan, where hopefully we’ll achieve a better result than.”