Seidl: Sainz ruined Sochi race for both McLarens

Date published: September 29 2020

Carlos Sainz's McLaren is craned away after his accident in the Russian Grand Prix

Andreas Seidl has made no attempt to excuse Carlos Sainz for the accident that ended his Russian Grand Prix on the opening lap.

Sainz crashed out at Sochi when he ran wide at Turn 2 and on attempting to return to the track while evading the marker blocks, he misjudged the angle of approach and caught the corner of the wall.

It resulted in a poor Sunday for the McLaren team because Lando Norris, who had narrowly avoided hitting Sainz’s stricken car, ran over some debris and lacked pace throughout the race, eventually finishing in P15.

As a result, McLaren’s third place in the constructors’ World Championship is under major threat from Racing Point, who have narrowed the gap to two points despite having had 15 deducted because of the copying controversy. Renault are now seven behind McLaren.

The Spanish driver held his hands up about the incident and rather than Seidl trying to absolve him of the blame, the team principal allowed Sainz to take full responsibility and instead preferred to move on.

Carlos Sainz PA

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“Carlos was fine, I think his foot is a bit bruised but it doesn’t look like anything major,” said Seidl, quoted by GP Fans. “In the end, Carlos said it himself, the angle he was approaching the slot, he just misjudged it and touched the barrier and it was his fault.”

Sainz, along with other drivers, voiced his dissatisfaction after the race with the design of that part of the circuit, but Seidl chose not to get involved in that discussion.

“It would be wrong to blame anyone else,” said the 44-year-old German. “In the end, Carlos said what happened. He misjudged the situation with the angle he was approaching that slot and crashed into the barrier, which was a mistake. Honestly, I would leave it like that.

“It ended our race for both cars, unfortunately, at turn two of a long race because Lando had to back out and was last after the first lap.

“Then there was nothing else to do, so we boxed under the Safety Car for hard tyres and tried to simply survive and hope for something else to happen like another Safety Car, which didn’t work out.

“Very disappointing to leave with zero points because the performance we had in qualifying, P6 and P8, I think we were up for good points.

“Important to go away, everyone learns from it, the drivers, the team, and try again at the Nürburgring.”

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