Carlos Sainz Jr says his qualifying performance has failed to match his expectations after he felt track conditions changed dramatically at the Hungaroring.
The Toro Rosso driver laments a disappointing qualifying which places him 12th on the grid for tomorrow's Hungarian Grand Prix as the Spaniard was unable to put together a quick lap to make the jump into Q3.
Sainz says he lost confidence to push his STR10 machine because of a lack of rear end feeling and cited the change of wind blowing across the track as a contributing factor to his frustrations.
“The problem is that we arrived in qualifying and found a completely different track to FP3, when we knew we weren't P5 we were P8 or P9 and we would fight for those positions but now we are in P12 and we are disappointed,” Sainz said. “It is something to look at. The wind changed a lot in its direction and intensity and this meant all my references changed and my feeling with the car depending on the corner changed.
“I was missing some confidence and if you are missing it then it is difficult to get into a rhythm in the whole qualifying.”
Sainz also pointed to a lack of clean runs which prevented him from chipping chunks of time off in Q2 and found it difficult to find a groove from the practice sessions.
“I never really did a clean lap until Q2 run two and that was nothing special compared to what we have done previously,” he explained. “The increase in track temperature meant we lost rear support everywhere.
“Plus I have been having trouble in the braking the whole weekend and if you don't have confidence in the brakes and then you have a weak rear then you struggle and find yourself in a very tricky situation with overheating in the last sector.”
Despite his below par qualifying Sainz is looking to draw upon his achievement at Monaco in his bid for points in Hungary.
“With race pace we are not too bad but I am starting surrounded by Mercedes which is not the ideal place to start along with the dirty side of the track. But in Monaco we started in the pit lane and got P10 so nothing to worry about. We need to keep positive, keep the concentration and in F1 races anything can happen.”