McLaren F1 Team‘s season has taken a positive turn after they were able to secure a podium at the Brazilian Grand Prix at the weekend.
Carlos Sainz Jr. was given the unexpected honour of a podium finish due to the penalty awarded to Mercedes AMG Motorsport‘s Lewis Hamilton after he had a collision with Red Bull Racing‘s Alexander Albon.
“Yes! What a day! It’s a weird first podium not being there straight after the race, but I’m extremely happy with our race today. To finish P3 coming all the way from the back of the grid was a big challenge, but we fought until the end with everything we had!” he said.
The Spaniard added that he felt his one-stop strategy was effective, and though he was the only person on the grid to use the strategy.
“It was really difficult to hold the other midfield cars behind after the two Safety Car re-starts, but I managed to defend my position well and took advantage of what happened at the front of the race.”
Sainz Jr. said he wished for this kind of result to become a regular occurrence.
“My first podium is obviously very special but we need to keep pushing to step up there on pure pace! That’s what we’re really here for, that has to be our goal!”
Brit Lando Norris appears positive following his eighth place finish.
“A tough, long race, a good result for the team and awesome for Carlos. My first stint was alright, apart from getting boxed-in at the start, and my pace was okay. I boxed onto the Hard tyre and struggled, I just didn’t seem to get them working at all.”
He added: “I was then fortunate with the Safety Car allowing me to make up positions after stopping again for Mediums.
“Carlos on the podium, both cars in the points, is a great reward for everyone here and at the factory who have worked hard for Carlos and I this weekend.”
Team principal Andreas Seidl is pleased that the team reached their target of securing fourth in the Constructors’ Championship.
“Fourth in the Constructors’ World Championship for McLaren secured. First podium for Carlos in his F1 career and first podium for McLaren since 2014.
What an amazing achievement for the entire team back home in the factory plus here at the track, and for Carlos and Lando after putting in so much hard work throughout the year,” he said.