Formula 1
Formula 1
R
Emilia Romagna GP
18 Apr
Race in
48 days
09 May
Next event in
65 days
23 May
Race in
83 days
R
Azerbaijan GP
06 Jun
Race in
97 days
13 Jun
Race in
104 days
27 Jun
Race in
118 days
04 Jul
Next event in
121 days
18 Jul
Race in
139 days
R
Hungarian GP
01 Aug
Race in
153 days
29 Aug
Race in
181 days
05 Sep
Race in
188 days
12 Sep
Race in
195 days
26 Sep
Race in
209 days
R
Singapore GP
03 Oct
Next event in
212 days
10 Oct
Race in
222 days
R
United States GP
24 Oct
Race in
237 days
31 Oct
Race in
244 days
R
Australian GP
21 Nov
Race in
264 days
R
Saudi Arabia GP
05 Dec
Race in
279 days
R
Abu Dhabi GP
12 Dec
Race in
286 days

Sainz will be “free” to fight Leclerc on track at Ferrari

Charles Leclerc and newcomer Carlos Sainz will start the 2021 Formula 1 season with equal status at Ferrari, says team principal Mattia Binotto.

shares
comments
Sainz will be “free” to fight Leclerc on track at Ferrari

Although Leclerc will be entering his third season at the Italian team – while former Toro Rosso, Renault and McLaren driver Sainz is about to embark on his first campaign there – Binotto is clear that there will be no number one driver.

“There is nothing written in the contract of Charles being the [team] leader,” said Binotto. “I think that the two will be free to fight on track.

“I think it's important that they are not damaging themselves, that is clear, but I think that they will have equal opportunity, certainly at the start of the season.”

Read Also:

Binotto said that Ferrari’s priority would always be to maximise constructors’ championship points, so any pit wall involvement in team orders would only be on that front.

“Our top priority, as I said in the past and will remain, is to optimise the team's points,” he added. “So it may be that in some races, it will be important that the two are somehow helping team decisions or accepting team decisions in order to optimise what is the team's interest. And by doing the team interest I think we are prevailing and we are helping the drivers' interest as well.

“Later in the season, if there will be a clear advantage of one driver to the other and that one of the two drivers may achieve an objective which is not possible for the other, I think it will be an open discussion between the two.

“Then, let's see how we can eventually help each other but still to the benefit of the team. But optimising the team points is the first priority.”

Sainz had his first day at Maranello on Friday, where he was shown around the factory and had an early run of meetings to get to know the people he will be working with.

Speaking about his experience, the Spaniard said that the initial contact of being at the fabled Maranello facility was something that he would remember for the rest of his life.

“It’s the first time in red, which is obviously, as you can imagine, pretty special,” he said on Friday. “It's a special day for me in general. And it's probably a day I will never forget.

“I'm fully ready, fully motivated here today already, after leaving the UK yesterday. So totally new, and totally refreshed for this new challenge.

“There will be some Christmas and some holidays to disconnect, and to make sure we recharge the batteries as quick as possible. But you can be sure I'm going to be here pretty early in January to keep pushing, to keep helping this team to move forward as quick as possible in the best direction.

“I cannot wait to be honest. Today I had already my first meetings, my first look around the factory, and it's something that I will never forget.”

Related video

Ferrari reveals SF21 name and launch plan ahead of 2021 F1 test

Previous article

Ferrari reveals SF21 name and launch plan ahead of 2021 F1 test

Next article

Vettel, Hulkenberg weren't 2021 F1 options for Red Bull

Vettel, Hulkenberg weren't 2021 F1 options for Red Bull
Load comments

About this article

Series Formula 1
Drivers Carlos Sainz Jr. , Charles Leclerc
Teams Ferrari
Author Jonathan Noble
How McLaren F1’s new investors have already made an impact Prime

How McLaren F1’s new investors have already made an impact

The deal McLaren concluded with MSP Sports Capital last year which will help the cash-strapped Formula 1 team pay for much-needed infrastructure upgrades, also points toward the future for F1 itself, says GP Racing's Stuart Codling.

Formula 1
Feb 27, 2021
Why Verstappen isn't interested in the hype game Prime

Why Verstappen isn't interested in the hype game

In a pre-season where Red Bull has been unusually quiet, Max Verstappen has also been guarded about the team's fortunes in 2021. Even after trying the RB16B for the first time at Silverstone, the Dutchman was careful to manage expectations

Formula 1
Feb 26, 2021
The pros and cons of F1's 2021 rule changes Prime

The pros and cons of F1's 2021 rule changes

In the strategy for grand prix racing's future, 2021 represents a significant step towards the goal of closer racing and a more level playing field. That's the theory behind the latest raft of changes, but will they have the desired effect?

Formula 1
Feb 24, 2021
What Red Bull is trying to hide with its RB16B launch Prime

What Red Bull is trying to hide with its RB16B launch

Red Bull made no secret of the fact its 2021 F1 car is an evolution of its predecessor, but in keeping the same foundations while hiding some tightly-guarded updates with its RB16B, the team aims to avoid suffering the same pitfalls of previous years

Formula 1
Feb 23, 2021
How Albon plans to fight his way out of Red Bull limbo Prime

How Albon plans to fight his way out of Red Bull limbo

Alex Albon has faced the media for the first time since he lost his Red Bull drive at the end of 2020 and dropped out of a Formula 1 race seat altogether. He has a history of bouncing back from setbacks, so here's what he must do to rise again

Formula 1
Feb 23, 2021
Ranked! Carlin's greatest F1 graduates Prime

Ranked! Carlin's greatest F1 graduates

Carlin has helped guide enough drivers to Formula 1 to fill out an entire grid, plus a handful of reserves, to create a remarkable alumni list. With Yuki Tsunoda set to join that group, Motorsport.com has ranked its graduates to grace the grand prix scene...

Formula 1
Feb 22, 2021
Why Alfa's 2021 launch says more about its 2022 plans Prime

Why Alfa's 2021 launch says more about its 2022 plans

Alfa Romeo launched its C41 with a revised front nose, but there's little to suggest it will surge up the leaderboard in 2021. As the team frankly admits, it's putting its eggs in the basket labelled 2022 and hoping to hold the eighth place it earned last year

Formula 1
Feb 22, 2021
Why Gasly’s AlphaTauri haven is a blessing and a curse Prime

Why Gasly’s AlphaTauri haven is a blessing and a curse

Red Bull opted not to re-sign Pierre Gasly even before it decided to drop Alex Albon and so the Frenchman's Formula 1 journey will continue at AlphaTauri. This has positive and negative connotations for one of last season's star performers.

Formula 1
Feb 20, 2021