Carlos Sainz admits he is still far from his best form he has shown in the last two seasons at McLaren, but believes he is going in the right direction and will soon be able to show his best form for Ferrari.

Sainz had a good start in his new team with eighth and fifth place in the first two races of the season in Bahrain and Imola although teammate Leclerc beat him in both cases in both qualifying and the race.

The Spaniard believes he needs a few more races to get used to the new Ferrari car, which is different from the McLaren with which he finished sixth in the drivers’ standings last season, but that the adjustment is going pretty well so far.

Sainz praised Leclerc and his feeling for the car in key moments of qualifying where the driver must have full confidence in the car, and in Imola he pointed out that he had an advantage in the way he attacked curbs and carried more speed on the straights.

“During the winter, I worked really hard and spent a lot of time in the factory working with the guys,” said Sainz.

“I’m still far off from being the Carlos of McLaren and I’m aware of that, and so does the team.”

“But I showed flashes of speed like in the qualifying in Bahrain [when he was the fastest in Q2, 0.001 s ahead of Leclerc]. We saw it again in Imola in the rain where I flew in some laps, even in changing conditions.”

“So there are some good flashes of speed and I just have to keep working, let the races go and all those experiences will come together and make me stronger.”

“In the race in Imola we were very close. I have to say the podium was two seconds away and I lost ten seconds when I went off into the gravel.”

“So the podium wasn’t far away, even after the start from 11th place. The speed is encouraging, the feeling for the car in the rain is encouraging, and even in the dry I could keep up with Charles and Lando, we put a lot of pressure on each other.”

“So there are definitely positive signs. I just need to put a whole weekend together.”

“But considering I started 11th, made a few mistakes and was driving in the rain for the first time, I can’t be too disappointed that I finished fifth.”

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