McLaren’s Carlos Sainz took aim at Haas’ Romain Grosjean, blasting the Frenchman for his “very dangerous” and also lamenting the misfortune that deprived him of a solid haul of points.
Sainz sparred with Grosjean in the first half of Sunday’s British Grand Prix as the pair battled for fifth, the Haas driver finding himself among the top ten thanks to a long first sting on the medium tyre.
But Grosjean’s defensive moves tested Sainz’s patience as the two rushed down Wellington Straight, the maneuver also attracting the attention of the stewards who displayed a black-and-white flag to the Haas driver for unsportsmanlike conduct.
The Spaniard finally found a way past the Frenchman and put his head down to consolidate his position at the head of the midfield.
“A lot of attack in the first few laps, during the Safety Car period, and having to go through a very dangerous Romain Grosjean,” said Sainz.
“[I did] a lot of management in that middle part of the race. We knew it was going to be tight on the tyres. So it was proved that it was tight when I obviously had the puncture.”
A delaminated tyre – a fate that also befell both Mercedes drivers up front – pushed Sainz down the order and out of the points.
“I’m a bit lost for words to be honest – I think the images spoke for themselves. It’s a very frustrating end to an otherwise very strong race,” he added.
“In general I guess luck hasn’t been with me during these first three or four races.
“Today we lost a lot of points so I’m disappointed. But at the same time everything was done correctly up until the two laps to the end so I cannot be too hard on the team or myself.”
McLaren still bagged a fifth-place finish thanks to Lando Norris, but the young Briton lamented his inability to overhaul Renault’s leading contender, Daniel Ricciardo.
“I don’t think we had the best pace today,” said Norris. “Compared to yesterday I think the Renaults were definitely quicker than us and it just made our lives very difficult having to push more than we wanted to and having to push the tyres more than we wanted to.
“It was not terrible really. I made a couple of mistakes, one on the first lap, I let Carlos by.
“But then after that I wasn’t too bad. I think we had a good strategy with the pit stop, we both came out in decent positions.
“Carlos got unlucky with the puncture. I don’t think we could’ve done a lot more.”
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