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Carlos Sainz - Experience, talent and intuition

Sainz, one of today's top Formula 1 drivers and a Santander Private Banking ambassador, talks about his early steps in the sport, his ambition to continue achieving excellence and the importance of teamwork.

The Spanish driver, with nine Formula 1 seasons under his belt, drives for the legendary Scuderia Ferrari, where he has scored the only two wins by a Spanish driver in the last two years. Carlos describes this as a dream come true, one he attributes not only to talent, but also to hard work every day:

“Winning two races with Ferrari is unbelievable, something I dreamed of as a little boy. It shows that when you set yourself a goal and you fight for it […], sometimes you achieve your aim and dreams come true. That is what life has taught me. Now, I have other dreams: not just winning races but winning a championship, and that is what I am fighting for and working for.”

The importance of being backed by a great team

Victories depend not only on the driver but also on the team, which enables Carlos' talent and intuition to flourish at every curve and on every straight in every race. To achieve the perfect race, the car must perform perfectly, and the pit stops must be fast and precisely coordinated.

When we asked him about the key to success in Formula 1, Carlos replied: “Honestly, I think it's the team you build, because that team is made up of the driver, the car, the mechanics and the engineers. At Ferrari, we are a group of more than 1,300 individuals. Unless every one of us does our job exactly right and feels we are giving 100%, things don't work out, we don't get the results."

Always keeping his feet on the ground

Despite the huge popularity that comes with competing in a sport with millions of fans worldwide, Carlos has his feet firmly on the ground and is surrounded by his family and close friends:

“Between races I still see my family and my long-time friends. I still make it to the countryside to see my dog whenever I can. People imagine a glamorous lifestyle, but that's not how it is. So that keeps your feet on the ground to start with.”

His beginnings

Carlos Sainz was brought up in a family very closely linked to motorsport. His father, Carlos Sainz, is one of the most successful rally drivers today. By the age of three, young Carlos was already showing an interest in motor racing, and that was when he first drove a kart.

“I kept asking my father to take me karting. He saw I was pretty fast and that I was winning; that's when I told him I wanted to be a Formula 1 driver,” he explains. “It was very naive of me, because I thought it would be the easiest thing in the world, and it turned out to be much more difficult than you imagine when you are only six or seven years old,” Carlos says.

Beyond motor racing: sport and business

Carlos sees himself as someone who strives to give his best, whatever he is doing, whether in sports or elsewhere. He describes himself as a huge sports fan. Whatever sport he plays, he plays to win, and he is especially passionate about golf.

However, once his Formula 1 career comes to an end, Carlos would like to focus more on business, something he has already started doing and admits he loves.

“I like business. I like it a lot. Apart from working in sport, in Formula 1, I am already starting to dabble in business.”

He also acknowledges that he would like to invest; to be sure his investments and projects are successful, here too he tries to surround himself with a good team.

“Santander Private Banking manage part of my assets; they guide me in terms of knowing what to look at and where to invest,” Carlos says. He has already invested in some businesses: “I like to invest in my companies, in things that I think might do well […] They tend to be things in which my investment may also have some kind of impact.”

Learn more about our ambassador here.