Even though for the first time in several seasons there are two teams in contention for the title, Carlos Sainz Jr. believes that there are two different categories within the sport. The deficit between his team, Scuderia Toro Rosso and the likes of Mercedes AMG Petronas Formula One Team means that there is no way in which there can be fair competition.
It is clear that there is intense rivalry between Scuderia Ferrari and Mercedes this year, thanks to the huge regulation changes that have allowed Ferrari to close the gap. Red Bull Racing is often not far behind, and have consistently been able to challenge for podiums, and even at times the win. However, the midfield pack haven’t been able to compete with the three biggest teams, and this is why Sainz feels as though there are two categories.
Sainz has had a respectable year, consistently outscoring and comprehensively beating the other Toro Rosso driver, Daniil Kvyat. But he has not placed higher than a sixth position, showing that he isn’t on the same level as the top teams. Much of this is down to resources and money.
“I want to think the gap will be closed a bit, and I do think it’s a massive difference, a difference that’s way too big,” he commented, referring to the gap between the big three teams and the rest of the field.
“On the other hand the gap has just increased this year, throughout the year Mercedes and Ferrari have run away because they have more resources, more money to develop.”
“In my opinion at the moment we have two different categories in Formula 1 and it’s not what Formula 1 should be about, you know, so hopefully it’s something that will not happen next year.
“For us, as a midfield team, we don’t even look at what Mercedes is doing, as it’s just a different category at the moment.“