Despite being presented with a golden opportunity to compete with a front-running team at the start of a new era of Formula 1 regulations, Sainz struggled to consistently perform at his best and was unable to challenge his teammate Charles Leclerc for top honors within the team. However, Sainz is determined to put these struggles behind him and make the most of his opportunity with Ferrari in 2023.
As quoted by it.motorsport.com, Sainz spoke about his second year at the Scuderia and the challenges he faced:
“Every car I’ve driven in Formula 1, I’ve always adapted immediately.
“It was the first time in my career that I was two or three-tenths off the pace and had to duck my head to try and figure out where those two or three-tenths were.
“Charles drove very well in the first half of the year. He showed me my limits a little more.
“But in the end, I managed to find the rhythm. I finished at a very good level, and this is a good foundation to be able to better from the start of next season.”
It is clear that Sainz faced a number of difficulties during his first full season with Ferrari, but he is optimistic that he will be able to overcome these obstacles and perform at a higher level in 2023. Whether feeling more comfortable in the new Ferrari will allow him to outscore Leclerc remains to be seen, but it is certain that it will be beneficial for Sainz’s performance.
Ferrari’s inability to sustain itself in the 2022 Championship fight will be an area of immense scrutiny for the Maranello squad next season. Provided that Ferrari can produce race-winning machinery over the winter, it will be up to Sainz and Leclerc to put the Prancing Horse at the front of Formula 1 again. With Sainz determined to make the most of his opportunity and Leclerc consistently performing at a high level, there is no doubt that the Ferrari drivers will be a formidable pairing in 2023.