Sainz Expecting More 'Ding-Dongs' With Leclerc In Future As He Outlines 'Biggest Mistake'

Sunday, 30 June 2024 at 12:00
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Carlos Sainz said he expects more ding-dongs with Charles Leclerc in 2024 as battle between Ferrari drivers intensifies.
The year 2024 is the fourth season that Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz have been teammates driving for Scuderia Ferrari. Throughout the last couple of years, the two enjoyed many super close battles.
Crucially, they never had a big incident or crash. However, there have been quite a few very close calls. One of their most borderline battles took place during the tenth round of the 2024 season in Barcelona.
Sainz went for an overtake on Leclerc, and the two touched in the middle of a corner, almost resulting in a significant collision. Neither of the Ferrari drivers was happy with the situation after the race, as they fired a few shots at each other while talking to the media.
Addressing the situation between himself and his Monegasque teammate during the following weekend in Austria, the 29-year-old driver said:

"With Charles, it's obviously not the first ding dong, and it will not be the last. We always have one or two ding dongs a year because it's completely normal, it's completely natural when you have two drivers that are sharing the same piece of asphalt for 24 races."

According to Sainz, one factor contributing to the close battles between the two Scuderia drivers is that they almost always start right next to each other.

"We’re starting always P1 and P2, P2 and P1, P4 and P5, P5 and P6. There's starts, there's strategy, there's overtaking."

"And with two competitive guys like him and me that, luckily for the team, are sharing the same piece of asphalt at every race, there's always going to be little ding-dongs."

Following the race in Barcelona, you might expect the Spaniard to say that he talked to his teammate and that situation, as we've seen in Barcelona, won't occur again. However, he said he expects more of these throughout the remainder of this season.

"These little ding-dongs are always going to be there. You obviously want to keep them to the minimum. And the important thing is that after four years with Charles, the relationship has always been good."

"We've always solved these little ding dongs by ourselves, without the help of the team principals, always discussing them among each other."

In the end, the 29-year-old admitted that firing shots at each other through the media after the Spanish Grand Prix was probably "the biggest mistake." He added:

"Sometimes, I would like to keep it out of the media because it doesn't help any of us. This is probably the biggest mistake, but apart from that, we're doing the best we can."