Las Vegas F1: Carlos Sainz in a "bad mood" as Ferrari front-row lockout hampered by grid penalty
Carlos Sainz remains in a 'bad mood' despite a strong showing in the Las Vegas Grand Prix Qualifying.
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Carlos Sainz remains in 'a very bad mood' after his controversial grid penalty means he'll start 12th despite a front-row 2023 Las Vegas Grand Prix Qualifying result. The Ferrari driver finished second quickest in today's (November 18) F1 Qualifying and just 0.044s short of Scuderia team-mate Charles Leclerc.
Speaking on the result, Sainz said he's 'disappointed' despite an 'incredible' front-row lock-out, Autosport reports. He said: "An outstanding job by the whole team. We've dominated qualifying together after a tough Friday yesterday to put together the whole car again.
"To get a front-row lock-out, I think it's incredible. Obviously, I would love to be on pole because it would mean I start 11th instead of 12. But I think that we did the maximum that we could today.
"Obviously still disappointed with yesterday. I'm not going to lie. I'm still in a very bad mood but I'm trying not to show it too much. But it is what it is."
Formula One bosses were dealt a blow after first practice for the Las Vegas Grand Prix was cancelled due to a loose manhole cover causing Carlos Sainz to break down with eight minutes on the clock. Television replays showed Sainz being jolted in his cockpit as the cover struck the underneath of his machine as he approached 200mph on the Las Vegas Boulevard.
The damage caused to the Ferrari meant the team had to take a third control electronics package of the season, which exceeded the allocated amount of two set by the FIA. Ferrari team principal Frederic Masseur said the incident was "unacceptable for F1.”
After deliberating, the FIA stewards concluded Sainz will still receive a 10-place grid drop, despite the damage occurring from a faulty track. The stewards - including Garry Connelly and Derek - said in a statement: “The stewards note that if they had the authority to grant a derogation in what they consider in this case to be mitigating, unusual and unfortunate circumstances, they would have done so, however the regulations do not allow such action”.
Following the Las Vegas Qualifying result, Sainz told Sky Sports he was 'sad', 'frustrated, and 'disappointed' with the decision. He said: "I'm paying tomorrow one of the most unfair penalties I've ever seen."
The problem of loose manhole covers at street venues is not a new one in the sport. Jenson Button struck a dislodged drain in practice in Monaco in 2016, while George Russell also ran over a drain cover in Azerbaijan four years ago.