The city of Baku which hosts the Azerbaijan Grand Prix reserved a windy welcome the likes of which has not been seen in recent years for Carlos Sainz, Charles Leclerc and everyone involved in the Formula 1 world championship. The two Scuderia Ferrari Mission Winnow drivers met the media in the usual virtual press conference and both were asked about the track and their expectations for the weekend.
Happy but realistic. “The podium finish in Monaco was important, because it was a sort of reward for all the work we have done so far this season,” said Carlos. “I was pleased to see that we were competitive in Monte Carlo, but here in Baku, I expect the hierarchy will go back to the one we have seen in the other races this year, with very small gaps between the cars in the group right behind the two teams at the front. As for the track, it is quite special and I think all the drivers like it.” Charles was in agreement with his team-mate. “Apart from Monaco, Baku is my favourite street circuit and in fact one of my outright favourites,” he revealed. “I love driving between the walls and I have great memories as it was here that I scored my first Formula 1 points and I was very quick too in 2019. I feel that the Monaco weekend was a one-off and that here we will return to fighting down to the nearest thousandth to be ahead of our rivals in the mid-field. We need to do a good job, because just the slightest little thing can make the difference.”
Track walk. In the afternoon, both drivers did their usual reconnaissance lap of the track to get their bearings and then ended the day in meetings to prepare for tomorrow’s free practice.
Programme. In fact, the track action gets underway at 12.30 local (10.30 CET) with the first session, with the second starting at 16 (14 CET). On Saturday, qualifying takes place at 16 (14 CET), preceded by the final hour of free practice at 13 (11 (CET). The race starts at 16 (14 CET) on Sunday.