McLaren’s Carlos Sainz has said that Haas are a cut above in the midfield battle, predicting their pace advantage to be “half a second” in qualifying.
And, based on what he has seen on the timesheets, Sainz thinks it is going to take an almighty effort this season to be able to out-pace the American outfit in qualifying trim.
“Haas, they are a bit too far ahead in the midfield for everyone else,” Sainz said in Bahrain.
“That is the only bad thing compared to last year, that the Haas is a bit too far away compared to last year.
“It is more than half a second, to close a gap of half a second even in a high development rate this season it would be a very difficult task.
“They won’t standstill so you need to develop at least seven or eight tenths which is a lot of lap time. My big estimate is it is going to be very difficult to end the year in front of Haas in qualifying.
“I wouldn’t say in a race but in pure pace it is going to be very difficult for anyone.
“I don’t look at numbers as much as the engineers, I just do my guesses looking at lap times and how good their lap times were compared to mine or my team-mate’s.
“I did a rough calculation, this is not an exact number. Half a second is a lot but we will try.”