Binotto promises Sainz new PU ‘as soon as possible’

Michelle Foster
Carlos Sainz sitting in his Ferrari. Russia September 2021

Carlos Sainz sitting in his Ferrari with his visor up, looking focused. Russia September 2021

Carlos Sainz will have Ferrari’s new engine as “soon as possible” after the Spaniard voiced his disappointment at how easily he lost the lead in Russia.

Sainz lined up second on the Sochi grid but was quickly up into the lead, out-dragging pole sitter Lando Norris off the line.

His joy turned to disappointment when, on lap 13, Norris powered his way past with Sainz unable to defend P1.

Speaking after the race, which he finished in third place, he said: “The next time I’m P1 I’d like not to be overtaken with that ease.”

Ferrari hope to make that a reality for the Spaniard with team boss Mattia Binotto revealing he will take their new upgraded PU in the not-too-distant future.

“As soon as possible,” he told Sky Italia, “because we think it’s an advantage.

“Then we will have to decide based on the track, on the overtaking opportunities. But I don’t deny that the idea is to do it as soon as possible.”

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Binotto was happy with what he has seen of Ferrari’s new hybrid system, which Charles Leclerc debuted in Russia.

Although he started at the very back of the grid, he was challenging for a points-finish when the rain came down.

“The power unit behaved well,” said Binotto, “it behaved as we expected.

“So it works properly, I think for Charles it was also a support for his race and this is positive for the rest of the season.

“Starting from the back of the grid we didn’t expect to score many points with him but for how the race was going all in all in the end we hoped to do that.

“So good to have changed it, good for Charles to have this power unit for the rest of the season, it’s a positive point for sure.

“The old one is not bad but the difference between the two is present. Carlos with the new one could have done even better.”

Leclerc got caught out in the chaos of the rain in the closing laps, the driver finishing P15 as Ferrari delayed his stop for intermediate tyres.


“Charles too first of all did a very good start, a good recovery, he had a good race pace,” Binotto said.

“The new power unit worked well too. He found himself more or less always there with Verstappen, to show how good his race was till then.

“Then it’s clear in the end the timing of the tyre choice has not been ideal in that chaotic moment. It’s a pity because the final result could have been way better.

“But we will learn from this too, we said we have to improve in every area. The first two not perfect pit stops cost us some positions too, especially with Charles. Then at the end the timing with the tyre choice. We look especially at that to understand how we could have done better.”

Additional reporting from Luca Brambilla


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Another Ferrari podium at Sochi

Carlos Sainz earned P3 for Ferrari in a chaotic race in Sochi.