Sainz to join Ferrari: The Spaniard's career to date

Ferrari revealed that Carlos Sainz and Charles Leclerc would form their youngest driving pairing in 50 years. Here's a look at the Spaniard's career to date.

Published : May 14, 2020 22:17 IST

Carlos Sainz will partner Charles Leclerc at Ferrari from 2021.
Carlos Sainz will partner Charles Leclerc at Ferrari from 2021.

Carlos Sainz will partner Charles Leclerc at Ferrari from 2021.

Ferrari will pair Charles Leclerc with Carlos Sainz in 2021 as the Italian team looks to get back to Formula One's summit.

It was confirmed on Thursday that Sainz would fill the void left by Sebastian Vettel's departure at the end of the 2020 season.

Ferrari revealed the 25-year-old Spaniard and Leclerc, 22, would form their youngest driving pairing in 50 years.

Following the announcement of his impending move , take a look at Sainz's career so far.


The son of Carlos Sainz - a double World Rally Championship title-winner - Sainz Junior was perhaps always destined for a life on the track.

In 2009 he won the prestigious Junior Monaco Kart Cup, a race whose previous winners include Vettel, Leclerc and Robert Kubica. 

Sainz later raced in British and European championships and made his mark at the 2014 Formula Renault 3.5 Series, winning seven races with DAMS to take the title and draw interest from F1 teams.


A month after winning the 3.5 Series, it was confirmed Sainz would be making the step up to F1 with Red Bull's junior team Toro Rosso.

Sainz, who was part of Red Bull's young driver programme, finished ninth on debut at the Australian Grand Prix and went one better in Malaysia.

He finished the season with seven top-10 finishes and 18 points to come 15th in the final standings.


Sainz collected 46 points in 2016 and ended up 12th in the championship standings. He particularly impressed in the wet weather in Brazil, where he came home sixth having started 15th on the grid.

He improved again in 2017, finishing inside the top 10 in six of the opening eight races, form which led to him accepting a move to Renault for 2018.

That was brought forward for the final four races of the 2017 season, though, after Jolyon Palmer left Renault, and Sainz concluded the season with 54 points to finish ninth in the drivers' standings.


Sainz had just one full campaign with Renault - his fifth-place finish in Azerbaijan his best return - and switched to McLaren for 2019, replacing compatriot Fernando Alonso.

He had a far from ideal start with his new team, retiring in Australia and then crashing in Bahrain and China, before he began to consistently finish among the points.

And Sainz showed his comfort in the McLaren around the Red Bull Ring, making his way through the field to finish eighth at the 2019 Austrian Grand Prix having started from the back of the grid.


A spot in the top three had proved elusive for Sainz in his F1 career - and that did not look like changing when he lined up at the back of the pack for the 2019 Brazilian Grand Prix.

However, an incredible race saw Sainz cross the line fourth, but a promotion into the top three was forthcoming when Lewis Hamilton was handed a post-race penalty.

It was McLaren's first podium in 2,072 days - a barren run for the team stretching back to the Australian GP in 2014 - as a one-stop strategy at Interlagos paid off.

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