PALMER: Did Ferrari’s French GP technique cease Carlos Sainz on the rostrum?

I’ve already touched on Ferrari’s strategic state of affairs this yr. They failed to show one from two at Monaco, and Charles Leclerc was overwhelmed outright by Silverstone after simply three races.

In France, the technique was once more doubtful. This final little bit of strategic curiosity is not as distinguished as the opposite two, however it did confuse me and I believe it price Carlos Sainz a podium end.

Within the second spherical of the race, a lot of the drivers have been on onerous tires, beginning with medium tires and due to the Security Automobile, they received an excellent second to pit. Which means Paul Ricard’s horrendous pit cease lack of 27 seconds has been considerably decreased.

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Those that began on strong tires have been hampered by Security Automobile timing. In addition they opted for pitstops to ease pit-stop instances, however needed to swap to medium tires to satisfy the regulation that each driver should use a minimal of two compounds for the race. This left them with a reasonably lengthy race of 35 laps, which was troublesome to achieve on the finish.

Three drivers – Sainz, Valtteri Bottas and Pierre Gasly – struggled and confronted such difficulties. Alfa Romeo did not actually miss their likelihood to deliver Bottas to the top, so attempt once more and shut the assured 2 stops, simply leaving Sainz and Gasly within the center for an additional cease. or lengthen to the top on these media

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Sainz had a fantastic weekend behind the wheel, flying once more in second and instantly dispatching numerous drivers to complete third behind Sergio Perez. That is the place the staff radio speak began as Carlos struggled to go the Pink Bull man.

From contained in the cockpit, the Spaniard wished his Ferrari staff to give you a special option to beat Perez, which was basically a second pit cease and a contemporary tire assault, similar to Max Verstappen used to beat Lewis Hamilton to victory. earlier yr.

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The issue with this alternative was that the lack of pit stops was enormous, the most important of the season, because the pace restrict was prolonged to 60 km/h on Friday. On high of that, Sainz acquired a five-second penalty for his secure launch. Any pit cease would have realistically put him out of competition, however a minimum of an early one at this level would have given him a greater hope of battling with the brand new tires.

As an alternative, Ferrari hesitated and ultimately requested Sainz to pit whereas making a long-awaited transfer with Perez, a lot to the motive force’s chagrin. As quickly as Ferrari noticed what was happening, they reversed the decision and Sainz took over.

2022 French Grand Prix: Sainz overtakes Perez amid Ferrari pit chaos

At this stage of the race, with 11 laps to go, Sainz was clearly quicker than Sergio Perez, who was affected by entrance tire put on. The choice to field Carlos within the subsequent spherical made no sense to me as a result of he had simply gained a vital place.

It is all the time troublesome for a driver to beat the staff order as a result of they’ve all the knowledge and as strategists you realize that is speculated to be their bread and butter. They’ve one job to do all weekend, so they need to know finest. We’re all human and we’re certain to make errors now and again.

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However Sainz has already made the fitting calls and been in place to win at Monaco and Silverstone (he ultimately took the win dwelling). I believe he ought to have performed it once more in France.

Mattia Binotto has defended Ferrari’s determination to drop Carlos Sainz on the finish of the race in France.

Mattia Binotto informed the media he was nervous the medium bike would not make it to the top, so he opted for the secure possibility and let Carlos go – Carlos towed the identical celebration line within the post-race interview.

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In fact, Binotto might have been proper: the medium tire might not have made it to the top, however I do not see the justification for a pit cease in the mean time it occurred. Ferrari ought to have realized this sooner and let their driver race earlier than they misplaced time within the struggle with Perez, or they need to have dropped Carlos till he began to point out indicators of degradation.

Given how he received previous Perez on the finish, it was clear that Ferrari had extra grip and have been justified in opening up the hole as he had began. On this case, the worst case state of affairs is that Perez begins to catch Sainz once more after a number of laps, and then you definitely notice all is misplaced and as a substitute of falling by the wayside early, you return and end fifth.


Pierre Gasly adopted the identical technique at Sainz and managed to get the center tire to the top of the race.

The very fact is that Gasly, who had a medium-long distance, was in a position to attain the top, and in the previous few laps he beat nearly all of the troublesome runners in entrance of him.

He additionally had the melee skill to cost into the soiled air, preventing a number of instances to realize place. Ferrari refused to search out out for themselves, though it appeared that the typical participant might be higher than anticipated.

READ MORE: “I fought loads,” Gasly says after leaving dwelling race with out factors

That leaves an uneasy feeling for a staff with the tempo to win, however the technique stays questionable. I am positive each drivers actually wish to analyze their decision-making course of because the summer time trip approaches.

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