Monaco GP: Carlos Sainz positive as Ferrari set early pace in Monte-Carlo

Carlos Sainz

Ferrari driver Carlos Sainz has said that he believes the Scuderia are currently looking strongest of all at the Monaco Grand Prix and seem to be struggling less than the other teams with the bouncing around the track.

Bouncing has been a buzzword this year in Formula 1 thanks to the porpoising effect generated by the cars’ new aero configurations, though most of the teams seem to have got on top of it now.

However, a different kind of bouncing looked to be causing issues around the streets of Monte-Carlo on Friday with the stiffness of the cars highlighting that the track surface is far from the smoothest the drivers have ever been on.

Sainz himself said during FP1 on Friday that he was having a ‘bad ride’ but, despite that, he’d go third quickest in the session and then second fastest in FP2 – just four-hundredths of a second behind team-mate Charles Leclerc.

The Ferrari is looking the strongest car in Monaco, then, and Sainz believes that there are good early signs ahead of all-important qualifying later on this afternoon:

“The important thing is we are competitive, we are feeling pretty good for the challenge that it is,” he said on Friday via the official F1 website.

“These cars are a lot more all over the place, a lot trickier with the bumps, with the kerbs. But yes the important thing is it seems the others are struggling even more so yeah, good challenge ahead of us.

“I guess we seem to be working the tyres well, and at the same time we seem to have a decent level of grip which is the important thing around here, no? And it seems like the ride, the bumps, the kerbs, seems like it is a challenge for everyone.”

Carlos Sainz
MONTE-CARLO, MONACO – MAY 27: Carlos Sainz of Spain driving (55) the Ferrari F1-75 on track during practice ahead of the F1 Grand Prix of Monaco at Circuit de Monaco on May 27, 2022 in Monte-Carlo, Monaco. (Photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Images)

It’ll certainly be interesting seeing what each team does for FP3 and then qualifying with their ride heights as some of the cars really were pounding the track surface over the course of the lap.

It’s a different kind of bouncing to the one caused by ground effect at high speed, of course, but is no less a nuisance and whoever can find the sweet spot between set-up and lap time should have a successful weekend.

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