F1: Carlos Sainz reveals he is ‘extremely close’ to extending his Ferrari contract

Carlos Sainz reveals he is ‘extremely close’ to extending his Ferrari contract after entering the final year of his current deal, with Mattia Binotto and Co keen to tie their star man down to fresh terms

  • Carlos Sainz has less than a year remaining on his current deal with Ferrari
  • He signed a two-year contract when joining the team ahead of the 2021 season
  • Sainz then finished in a career-best fifth-place in last year’s F1 championship
  • The Ferrari star says he is now on the verge of signing a contract extension

Carlo Sainz has revealed he is ‘extremely close’ to signing a new Ferrari contract which would extend his stay with the team beyond the end of the season.

Sainz, 27, joined Ferrari last year as a replacement for four-time world champion Sebastian Vettel, who left to join Aston Martin ahead of the 2021 season.

The Spaniard initially penned a two-year deal with Mattia Binotto’s outfit and partnered up with Charles Leclerc, before finishing ahead of his team-mate in last season’s drivers’ standings.

He ended the year in a career-best fifth, 5.5 points ahead of Leclerc down in seventh.

Carlo Sainz has revealed he is ‘extremely close’ to signing a new contract with Ferrari

Sainz (left) secured his fifth podium for Ferrari in Sunday's season-opening Bahrain Grand Prix

Sainz (left) secured his fifth podium for Ferrari in Sunday’s season-opening Bahrain Grand Prix

Ferrari are therefore keen to tie Sainz down to a contract extension following his impressive debut campaign.

And after securing his fifth podium for Ferrari in Sunday’s curtain-raising Bahrain Grand Prix, the driver revealed he is on the verge of agreeing fresh terms.

Sainz said: ‘I think we are close. Very close. Very, very close. Very close. Extremely close. Nearly there.’  

Binotto, Ferrari’s Team Principal, also added: ‘I think we found an agreement. It’s only a matter to translate it into paper.’ 

Sainz finished second out in Bahrain, which was his second successive podium after coming third in last season’s dramatic finale out in Abu Dhabi.

He finished second to team-mate Charles Leclerc in Bahrain, with Lewis Hamilton coming third

He finished second to team-mate Charles Leclerc in Bahrain, with Lewis Hamilton coming third

Now Ferrari boss Mattia Binotto is hoping to tie Sainz down to a contract extension

Now Ferrari boss Mattia Binotto is hoping to tie Sainz down to a contract extension

Binotto confirmed talks over a new deal are nearing a conclusion after Sunday's opening race

Binotto confirmed talks over a new deal are nearing a conclusion after Sunday’s opening race

However, the Ferrari star insists he has plenty of work to do if he is to clinch a first career victory.   

‘As a Ferrari driver it’s been my most difficult weekend and it just shows that I need to put my head down, understand this car, understand where Charles is making the difference with his driving and the way that he’s approaching the corners and driving the tyres, also in the race,’ he admitted.

‘I need to improve if I want to fight for a win and I will put my head down and try to do some steps coming into Jeddah. Can I improve it from one weekend to another? I think I can improve it.

‘Can I cut down the deficit completely? It’s a very good question. I wish I can and I will be working hard for it.’

Sainz is keen to build on his second-place finish in Bahrain and clinch his first career victory

Sainz is keen to build on his second-place finish in Bahrain and clinch his first career victory

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