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Sainz Critiques Media’s ‘Overhyped’ Reaction to Ferrari’s Imola Upgrade as Pole Position Bid Falls Short

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Carlos Sainz believes the press excessively exaggerated the significance of Ferrari's most recent improvements before the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix.

Carlos Sainz has criticized the press for excessively exaggerating Ferrari's most recent performance enhancements, as the team failed to compete for the top spot in the qualifying round at the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix.

Sainz managed to secure the fifth spot for the start of the race, right after his fellow Ferrari team member, Charles Leclerc, who qualified

Leclerc trailed Max Verstappen's leading time by a slight margin, with both Ferraris falling significantly behind in the initial segment of the lap.

Ferrari unveiled a major update for their car ahead of the Imola race, prompting numerous media sources to predict they will be a strong competitor this weekend.

Leclerc seemed poised to turn the excitement into a solid performance after leading both practice sessions on Friday.

Nevertheless, Ferrari was unable to keep up with Verstappen or their own cars, finishing in fourth and fifth places.

After the qualifying round, Sainz expressed that Ferrari's performance boost at Imola, following their recent upgrades, didn't catch him off guard.

"He expressed his belief that the team wasn't overly optimistic," he commented. "He suggested that the press might have exaggerated the significance of the improvements we introduced."

"Our understanding was that although it appeared to be a new car upon initial inspection, the data told a different story. The figures indicated that it was not a significant upgrade, with only minor details throughout that we hoped would make a difference."

"In my opinion, historically, this circuit has favored McLaren and Red Bull, while Ferrari has typically found it challenging. My observations confirmed that once again, that's precisely what unfolded."

It came as no surprise when Sainz expressed his desire for the team to concentrate on improving their weak points, especially considering Ferrari's significant time losses in the initial series of turns.

"He highlighted another advantage, stressing the clarity they have regarding their vulnerabilities, particularly in the types of corners he referred to. He expressed optimism that this insight will guide them in enhancing the car to overcome these shortcomings," he further stated.

"Additionally, our attention should also be directed towards the soft tyre. We've experienced some inconsistency with it this year, and as mentioned, the performance in the first sector has left me somewhat perplexed."

Leclerc felt greater frustration than Sainz as his opportunity for pole position diminished, yet he remains focused on contending for the win on Sunday.

"Indeed, achieving complete happiness is impossible, but it's encouraging to see that the upgrade is performing as anticipated," he continued. "That's always a positive indicator. Given the nature of this track, it's possible we haven't fully realized the upgrade's advantages, and unfortunately, we didn't meet our goal of securing pole position.

"Friday turned out well. We were previously uncertain about our fuel levels, but now, as qualifications approach, those concerns have been alleviated. Unfortunately, we find ourselves a bit more behind than anticipated. Nonetheless, I'm satisfied with my lap; I doubt much more could have been extracted from it. I believe we'll perform strongly in the race. However, on a circuit like this, securing pole position is crucial, and with the reduced DRS, overtaking will be even more challenging tomorrow."

"Winning won't be simple, yet we ought to aim for victory and assess our position afterward."

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