Sainz possibly emerging as Ferrari’s new ‘number 1’ – Italy

The Italian media is actively speculating if Ferrari is witnessing the rise of a fresh ‘number 1’ driver.

Carlos Sainz has been putting up a stronger front than previously acknowledged Ferrari pick, Charles Leclerc, post the summer hiatus, registering successive poles at Monza and Singapore and clinching a win this past Sunday.

“But that doesn’t mean that he has now replaced Charles Leclerc,” former F1 driver Timo Glock told Sky Deutschland.

“At Ferrari there is no clear number 1. In my opinion, both drivers are on equal terms.”

Yet, with Sainz’s remarkable pace, combined with his tactical savvy in Singapore, prominent voices in the Italian press are pondering if an internal shift in preference has occurred.

“Ferrari finds itself in the unexpected situation of having two captains,” Leo Turrini told Sky Italia. “Before, Leclerc was the leader – but now Sainz has climbed the hierarchy.”

La Gazzetta dello Sport’s Giusto Ferronato nods in agreement: “The victory complete with pole position has formally opened a debate – that of the duel for internal supremacy with Leclerc.

“After Singapore, is it now a fact that Carlos has overturned the hierarchy?”

From the same sports publication, Luigi Perna opined: “Sainz was perfect. Like (Gilles) Villeneuve at Jarama in 1981.

“He is intelligent like Niki Lauda and smart like Alain Prost. Until now Sainz was a solid and reliable driver. After Singapore, he is a champion.”

A piece in Tuttosport posited: “Why Sainz is now the leader. Was Singapore the turning point?

“What we saw was tactical genius like a computer driver such as Prost but with the passion of a Spaniard.”

And Giorgio Terruzzi in Corriere della Sera mused: “He seems in love, with light in his eyes. The confidence of a leader. What has changed with this superb demonstration?”