It’s the final Thursday of the season: Carlos Sainz and Charles Leclerc met up with the media in the Abu Dhabi paddock before setting off on a track walk to take a look at the changes introduced to the Yas Marina layout.
Fifth place. The first to speak was Charles who is aiming to finish the season bringing home fifth place in the drivers’ standings. “The fight with Lando (Norris) is still wide open. Clearly, I’d like to stay fifth, but most of all I want to enjoy myself. It’s been an intense season, which has seen us make constant progress and the fight for third place, which has come good in the final part of the year, is proof of that.” Then, on the topic of 2022. “We will get a taste of next season in next week’s test,” reckoned the Monegasque, “and I can’t wait to get stuck in to this new adventure.”
Progress. Carlos was asked by the media to sum up his first season with Scuderia Ferrari. “I’d say it’s been the best year of my career, in terms of my progress as a driver and as a person, because I found myself going through an experience that was completely different to anything I’d been through before, in the most historic Formula 1 team, which came with a lot more pressure. I think I made steady progress over the course of the season, improving my understanding with the team and of the car,” continued the Spaniard. “That increased and in the last few races I reached a strong level. I want to enjoy this final weekend of 2021 and end it with a good result, maybe even giving a small thought to fifth or sixth in the classification.”
Programme. The first free practice session starts tomorrow at 13.30 local (10.30 CET), with the second going ahead at 17 (14 CET). On Saturday, the final hour to fine tune the cars begins at 14 (11 CET) in preparation for qualifying at 17 (14 CET.) The 13th Abu Dhabi Grand Prix gets underway at 17 local (14 CET) on Sunday.