RACE DEBRIEF

    Ferrari may be struggling in 2020 – but having been announced in May as the driver to succeed Sebastian Vettel at the team next year, Carlos Sainz has said that he’s “very comfortable” with his decision to join the Scuderia.

    Sainz failed to take the start of the Belgian Grand Prix last weekend, allowing him to watch on in the race as his future team slumped to their worst finish of the season, with Vettel and Charles Leclerc finishing 13th and 14th, at a track where Leclerc won last year.

    READ MORE: ‘I am not happy’ – Sainz furious after engine problem wrecks his Belgian GP for second year in a row

    But asked ahead of the Italian Grand Prix whether the team’s performance made him nervous for next year, Sainz – who earlier had estimated that issues outside of his control at McLaren this season had cost him 30 points – replied: “I'm very comfortable with the decision I've taken.

    “I've got 100% confidence in Ferrari’s people in what they can do for the future. Let's just remember that last year they were capable of doing seven pole positions, so it's a team that I think knows how to produce very good cars.

    1270438426
    Sainz said losing 30 points in 2020 was more concerning to him than Ferrari's performance

    “And regarding whether I'm nervous, what makes me nervous is to lose 30 points due to no fault of my own; that's what really concerns me right now and what really makes me go to bed and think, 'Where the hell have I lost this amount of points and how is this happening to me?'. But no, I'm fully confident, I'm ready to go for Ferrari next season and I cannot be more excited.”

    Monza marks the first time that Sainz has attended a race in Italy since he was announced as a Ferrari driver. And the Spainiard said that his reception from the Italian fans had only served to cement his excitement for next year.

    WATCH: Charles Leclerc on what he's doing to help Ferrari out of their slump

    “I can already feel the excitement of the tifosi,” he said. “The way they've approached me whenever we leave the hotel, in between the hotel and the car – which is not that long time – but somehow, the tifosi manage to find you and to give you some good energy, and that good energy that I've received this weekend is already starting to make me feel how exciting it's going to be next year being part of such a team, with such a history.

    “Honestly, I don't think it's ever a bad time to go to Ferrari. I think going to Ferrari is such a unique experience and such a special place for a Formula 1 driver, that I don’t think there's ever going to be a bad time where you say, 'I do not want to go to Ferrari'. Give me that option 100 times again, I will always say yes.”