Sainz Targets ‘World Champion’ Status in F1 Decision-making

Carlos Sainz is adopting a methodical approach to strategizing his future in Formula 1 as he gets ready to say goodbye to Ferrari at the end of the 2024 season.

With careful consideration, the Spanish driver is aiming to assess his options meticulously, to align himself with the route that presents the best opportunity to secure a world championship.

The announcement made in early February cemented Lewis Hamilton’s transfer to Scuderia Ferrari for the 2025 season, where he will join forces with Charles Leclerc as his new teammate.

This move effectively leaves Sainz without a seat beyond the ongoing campaign, marking the conclusion of his fourth and final year with the renowned Italian team.

Amidst the pre-season testing sessions in Bahrain, Sainz had the opportunity to get hands-on experience with Ferrari’s latest challenger, the SF-24. As he faces the prospect of departing from the team, the 29-year-old was prompted to share his thoughts on embarking on the season with an uncertain future ahead.

Sainz replied, “If there’s one thing that I’ve had over the last few years it’s stability, It will be my fourth year in this team and I feel prepared and ready to take my fourth year as a good challenge here in Ferrari.

“Obviously next year the team will be different and I will be moving somewhere else, but I still have no idea where. I’m going to take my time to make the decision, the right decision for me, for my career, for the next three, or four years that I might be in the next place that I go to.

“In order for that, I need time to see the whole situation, talk to all the teams, and see who’s offering the best chance for me to be world champion in the future.”

Regarding his performance on the track, Sainz achieved the quickest lap times on the second day of testing at the Bahrain International Circuit. Previously, he had placed third on the opening day of testing.

After his initial time behind the wheel, the Spanish driver was left with a positive impression of the car: “I feel like [on the first day] we had an optimal day out on track. We ran a completely new car that seemed to be in a good window straight out of the box.

“We scanned the whole set-up, the whole up and down with the car, and it seemed to respond and react well. With the performance, I obviously have no idea, I just can tell that the Red Bull looks very quick, but apart from that, nothing else.”

Ferrari, alongside the other competing teams, will soon acquire an additional understanding of their competitive standing as the 2024 season commences in Bahrain from February 29 to March 2.