Leclerc gives different assessment as Sainz ‘tighter everywhere’ because of new cars

Carlos Sainz has indicated that"porpoising" could start to have long term effects on the wellbeing of the drivers.

Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz is adamant that a solution must be found to avoid injuring the drivers as a result of the pain he has been experiencing due to the turbulence caused by the new cars.

This year, ground effect aerodynamics have made a return under the new technical regulations, and it has led to the floor of the car running lower to the ground after the abolishment of the rake design.

The consequence of that is heavy contact between the bottom of the car and the track surface, causing nauseating oscillating movement, and this bouncing is known as “porpoising.”

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Such has been the severity of the abrasion with the ground that the shock travels up the spine of the drivers, and George Russell even noted after the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix that the pain had reached his chest.

“This is the first weekend I’ve truly been struggling with my back, and almost like chest pains from the severity of the bouncing. It’s just what we have to do to go and do the fastest laps,” he said.

Sainz insists that at this rate, with the bouncing as bad as it is, the current generation of cars is not sustainable.

“I have done checks on my back and neck tightness and this year it is tighter everywhere, I am already feeling it. I don’t need expert advice to know 10 years like this will be tough,” he explained.

The 27-year-old appreciates the desire to create a good racing spectacle for the fans – the reduced aerodynamic efficiency has enhanced on-track battles – but he indicated that the drivers’ wellbeing has not been considered at any point.

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“There is the interest of the teams, of overtaking, of the show you need to factor into the equation. But what if we, for the first time, also factor in the driver? It could be interesting,” added Sainz.

“It will get to a point that if we decide to go in a certain direction, the FIA need to get involved.

“It’s still a new idea for me and I need to talk to other drivers like George [Russell] that are struggling with the same phenomenon, to sit together to see what we can offer or propose.”

Sainz does not want to see anyone left with long term injuries as a result of racing in the pinnacle of motorsport, so wants to resolve the issue soon.

“We don’t like sounding, say, weak,” he stressed.

“I’m strong, I’m very fit, I consider myself one of the fittest drivers and I’ve never struggled in an F1 race at all.

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“But it’s more long term and for the benefit of all of us that maybe we should put it out there to talk about, and see what options we have.”

Sainz’s team-mate Charles Leclerc gave a rather contrasting view, revealing that the turbulence down the straight does not “disturb” him.