Carlos Sainz Jr. expressed his elation as he secured the best finish of his Formula 1 career with sixth position at the Spanish Grand Prix.
Sainz Jr. surged up to third place on the opening lap and battled with the Ferrari drivers; while he slipped back, he was able to take his best finish at his home race.
Sainz Jr. survived a post-race scare when he received a reprimand for crossing the pit exit fractionally before the circuit opened half an hour prior to the start.
"What a fantastic race! We finally put a whole weekend together – we had a productive Friday, were fast in qualifying and had good pace in the race today – and I’m a very happy man," he saids.
"P6 is an amazing result for me and the team, and to achieve this at my home race makes it even better.
"The start to the race was great, I think I did one of the best race starts of my life to be honest, running in a podium position and battling with Ferrari… Those first laps were really nice!
"I felt comfortable during the rest of the race, the team did a very good job with the pit-stops and I had a big smile on my face when I crossed the line in sixth position."
Sainz Jr. also offered congratulations to former team-mate Max Verstappen, who claimed his maiden Formula 1 victory.
"I’d also like to congratulate Max on his win today, I’m very happy for him and the Red Bull family – I think it’s great that Red Bull brings young talent into Formula 1 and we keep succeeding, proving them right," he said.