MCLAREN RENAULT MCL35 - CARLOS SAINZ - AUSTRIAN GP 2020
The summer of 2020 was the time when the series of many, many postponed and postponed - in the worst cases cancelled - races finally came to an end and the real racing season could begin.
A mood of optimism prevailed at the McLaren team following the winter tests. Already in 2019, they had managed to put some good results on the table, which was refreshing for the team's atmosphere after months of passion following their return.
Carlos Sainz Jr. was one of the most enthusiastic interviewees when asked about the outlook for 2020. The Spanish driver had a good feeling about the season - what a good feeling!
The much-anticipated season-opening Austrian Grand Prix was the first time the Orange and White had a chance to prove their progress, and they didn't take it lightly. Although Sainz had a minor on-track disagreement with Lance Stroll during the first free practice session - when the Canadian-born driver almost forced him off the track - he still managed to start qualifying with body and soul. In the end, he finished the qualifying session in 8th place with a time of 1:03.971, just over three tenths of a second behind his team-mate Lando Norris.
Then his adrenaline levels got a boost in the race with the news that Lewis Hamilton, who was running in the top 3, had been given a five-second penalty after his incident with Alexander Albon. Like Norris, he gave it his all and eventually outclassed Sergio Perez, but the MCL35's engine didn't cope well with this level of exertion and overheated. In order to avoid a more serious failure, he was forced to slow down and unfortunately missed out on the fight for the podium. However, there was no reason to be disappointed as he eventually saw the chequered flag in 5th place, giving McLaren a fantastic weekend.
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