tag-background-image

driver

Carlos Sainz


4

55 PTS

nationality
Spain
place
Madrid
date
01-09-1994
debut
2015

Carlos Sainz

Carlos Sainz is the son of Carlos Sainz Sr, who is a former double WRC champion. Sainz Jr decided to pursue a career in open-wheel racing instead. After he finished on the podium twice with McLaren, he earned his move to Ferrari in 2021, and a year later, he won his first race at Silverstone. Sainz is working with Ferrari to try to improve his car in order to catch Red Bull and fight for more race wins in the future.

F1 Standings

Pos.NameTeamPoints
1Max VerstappenRed Bull Racing77
2Sergio PerezRed Bull Racing64
3Charles LeclercFerrari59
4Carlos SainzFerrari55
5Lando NorrisMcLaren37
6Oscar PiastriMcLaren32
7George RussellMercedes AMG F1 team24
8Fernando AlonsoAston Martin F1 team24
9Lewis HamiltonMercedes AMG F1 team10
10Lance StrollAston Martin F1 team9
11Yuki TsunodaVisa Cash App RB7
12Oliver BearmanHaas F16
13Nico HulkenbergHaas F13
14Kevin MagnussenHaas F11
15Alexander AlbonWilliams0
16Guanyu ZhouStake F1 Team0
17Daniel RicciardoVisa Cash App RB0
18Esteban OconAlpine F1 team0
19Pierre GaslyAlpine F1 team0
20Valtteri BottasStake F1 Team0
21Logan SargeantWilliams0

Carlos Sainz in 2024

Sainz is currently competing in his 10th Formula 1 season. He is searching to add more race victories and podiums, as the title seems out of reach for Ferrari in 2024. The Italian team is in battle for P2 in the Constructors’ Championship with Aston Martin, Mercedes and McLaren. Currently, Sainz’s teammate is Monegasque driver Charles Leclerc. Sainz will leave Ferrari at the end of 2024 and will be replaced by Lewis Hamilton.

Sainz missed the 2024 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix because he required surgery on his appendix. 

Sainz’s family is well-involved in motorsports, as his father, Sainz Sr was a former World Rally Champion, currently competes in the World Rally-Raid Championship, and owns a team in Extreme E. Sainz Jr. often visits his father during these events. He also follows his favourite team, Real Madrid, closely.

Carlos Sainz biography

Carlos Sainz has been impressive since his days in karting. After victories in the Junior Monaco Kart Cup, among others, the Spaniard moved on to Formula BMW in 2010. That same year, Sainz was also accepted into Red Bull Racing's junior programme. In 2011, Sainz won the Formula Renault 2.0 NEC Championship and moved to Carlin in 2012, competing in several junior categories.

After a season in GP3 in 2013, which stood out less, as he only finished twice on the podium, Sainz joined DAMS in 2014 in the Formula Renault 3.5 Series. Sainz won seven races and won the title ahead of Pierre Gasly and Roberto Merhi, among others. This earned him a move to Toro Rosso for the 2015 season, which was the beginning of his journey in F1.

Carlos versus Max and loan to Renault

Sainz started his debut season alongside Max Verstappen at Toro Rosso. In his debut race in Melbourne, the Spaniard immediately scored points for the Faenza-based team and managed to do so a total of eight times that season. Nevertheless, Sainz finished three places behind Verstappen in the Drivers’ Championship, as the Dutchman twice managed to finish fourth in his Toro Rosso car.

The 2016 season started with the same driver duo, but Max Verstappen moved on to Red Bull Racing after four races. Daniil Kvyat was swapped back to Scuderia Toro Rosso, where he and Sainz formed the new driver partnership. Alongside the Russian, Sainz once again proved himself, and he finished two places above Kvyat in the Drivers’ Championship, who has already had a podium finish with Red Bull ahead of his return to Toro Rosso.

Sainz stayed at Toro Rosso for the 2017 season. After Sainz finished fourth in Singapore, it was confirmed that the Spaniard would not return to the team the following year. Starting with the United States Grand Prix, Sainz could already join Renault earlier than the end of 2017 to race along with Nico Hulkenberg. In exchange for the Spaniard, Toro Rosso ended their contract with engine supplier Renault and switched to Honda, which meant that Red Bull could try out if switching to the Japanese engine would be worthwhile. Carlos Sainz was loaned out to Renault but was still under contract to Red Bull.

In 2018, Sainz continued to drive for Renault, but there was constant uncertainty in the Spaniard's mind. He constantly finished in the points-paying positions during the year, but Hulkenberg finished the season seventh in the Drivers’ Championship, three places higher and with 13 points more. Renault replaced Sainz with Daniel Ricciardo, while the Spaniard moved to McLaren.

Sainz finds peace at McLaren

Carlos Sainz was signed by McLaren to replace fellow Spanish driver Fernando Alonso for the 2019 season and left his Red Bull ties behind. He raced alongside a rookie, Lando Norris, as they put McLaren back on the map. It was the Spaniard’s best season to date, finishing sixth in the Drivers’ Standings and earning his first podium at Interlagos.

In 2020, Sainz beat his teammate Norris again and finished sixth in the standings in a shortened season. Together with Norris, McLaren earned two podium finishes in 2020. The ‘Smooth Operator’ was close to winning the 2020 Italian Grand Prix, but he eventually finished second behind Pierre Gasly. During the silly season, Sainz decided to sign for Ferrari.

A dream move to Ferrari

After a disappointing season for Ferrari in 2020, Carlos Sainz was signed to replace Sebastian Vettel, who left for Aston Martin. In 2021, Sainz’s consistency proved to be important for the Italian team, as he earned four podiums during the year and only finished outside of the points twice. As a result, he beat Charles Leclerc in the Drivers’ Championship and moved the narrative from having a clear number-one driver at Ferrari.

In 2022, Sainz earned his first victory at Silverstone. He started on pole position for the British Grand Prix and survived a crazy race to win. In 2023, Red Bull Racing won all Grands Prix except one. Sainz ensured he was the driver to take the spoils during Red Bulls off weekend in Singapore. It was a brilliant, tactical drive when he had multiple drivers breathing down his neck. In the 2024 Australian Grand Prix, Sainz once again capitalised when Red Bull misfired to win his third GP.

Carlos Sainz popularity

Sainz is especially popular in the Western Mediterranean countries of Europe. Alongside Fernando Alonso, he is a fan favourite in Spain and has the support of the Tifosi both in Italy and worldwide. In 2022, Sainz was also presented with the Seven Sports Stars Award by the Community of Madrid.

What is Carlos Sainz’s greatest strength as an F1 driver?

One of Sainz’s biggest strengths is his consistency throughout the year. Since he joined McLaren in 2019, in every year but in 2022, he has scored more points than his teammate, thanks to constantly collecting points. Moreover, Sainz has been proven to be great at understanding how the race is going from his cockpit, telling his team over the radio his calls, which turned out to be correct.