Sainz keen to finish Renault tenure with a flourish

Carlos Sainz might be on his way to McLaren in 2019 in place of Fernando Alonso, but that’s not dimmed his enthusiasm for his remaining nine races with Renault.

Since the last Grand Prix in Hungary it’s been confirmed that Daniel Ricciardo is heading to Enstone next season while Sainz is off to Woking.

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“It’s been an intense summer due to the movements in the driver market,” the 23-year-old admitted.

There are still a lot of races to go this year and I’m determined to leave Renault having driven the R.S.18 at its very best.

“We have a lot of hard work to come throughout this next phase of the season,” he continued. “Staying fourth in the championship will not be easy, but we’re up for the challenge

  • McLaren officially confirms Carlos Sainz for 2019!

“I’ll be giving it my all to deliver the results on track,” he said, adding that McLaren’s engine deal with Renault meant that at least he wasn’t severing all ties with the manufacturer after 2018.

“It’s good that I’ll still have the link to Renault next season, but my focus is definitely on the races this year.”

Sainz had the satisfaction of beating his team mate Nico Hulkenberg and finishing in the points in the Hungarian Grand Prix. He said he can’t wait to get back on track after F1’s four week mandatory summer shutdown.

“While it’s nice to have a little break, I’m a driver and I love to race,” he said. “The sooner I get in the car, the happier I will be!

“However, I spent my summer break with my family and friends and had a good chance to rest and pick up some energy before this second part of the season.

“Training and nutrition were still present during the break, but I did have a couple of extra ice creams!”

Sainz couldn’t be happier that F1 gets back underway at Spa-Francorchamps, one of the most historic and iconic venues on the calendar.

“I like racing in Spa, it’s one of the special Grands Prix in Formula 1, and one all drivers look forward to racing,” he said.

“Spa is very enjoyable as it has everything: fast corners, long straights, overtaking opportunities, elevation changes and random weather

“It’s tough to find that perfect car balance,” he pointed out. “The flowing corners require high downforce, while being careful not to take off too much straight-line speed, which you need for the Kemmel Straight and before the bus-stop chicane.

“Of course Eau Rouge is the most famous corner at Spa,” he acknowledged. “But I quite like Pouhon, the long left-hander in the middle sector.

“It’s quite a difficult corner to get right, as you head down the hill and pray for grip with the car taking the corner at over 260kph in seventh gear. You get such a buzz through there!”

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