Sainz says being on football-style loan feels "strange"

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Carlos Sainz says being on loan from Red Bull to Renault is a strange situation because it is more common for a footballer than a Formula 1 driver.

The Red Bull protege switched to Renault from the energy drink company's junior team Toro Rosso for the final four races of 2017 and is contesting the entire 2018 season with the French manufacturer.

While it is not uncommon for big manufacturers to place young drivers at smaller teams, Sainz is now a fourth-year grand prix driver who moved to Renault as part of the deal switching Toro Rosso's customer engine supply to McLaren.

Sainz told Motorsport.com: "I've not heard of many drivers who are on loan, it's more of a football term.

"It's a bit of a strange situation, I'm a special case at the moment. That's why I can't let it get into my head.

"I need to just do what I was doing at Toro Rosso, having a good race every time I go out on track, and then things fall for themselves, like it did at Toro Rosso.

"Who would have told me when I was at Toro Rosso that this year I would be at Renault? No-one. It is a very special situation."

As part of the arrangement Red Bull is still able to recall Sainz if it decides it wants to promote the 23-year-old to its senior team for 2019.

Sainz's ex-Toro Rosso teammate Max Verstappen has already committed to Red Bull for next season and beyond but Daniel Ricciardo's future is uncertain.

Should Ricciardo re-sign with Red Bull, Sainz will be free to commit to Renault on his own terms.

"I'm trying to impress myself," said Sainz. "By that I mean I'm really looking forward to having a full season with a team. I'm going to keep it open, keep performing the way I've been doing.

"Things will sort out for themselves, normally if you perform well good things are coming.

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Carlos Sainz Jr.
Teams Renault F1 Team
Article type Breaking news