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Everyone is discussing the Formula 1 Las Vegas Grand Prix, and we are joining them. Carlos Sainz and the Scuderia Ferrari F1 team are already off to a terrible start, which is on-brand for the historic team. Check out everything that happened during P1 and P2 that will probably have lasting consequences on the Ferrari team standings.

Why is Carlos Sainz off to a bad start at the Formula 1 Las Vegas Grand Prix?

Carlos Sainz at the F1 Vegas Grand Prix
Carlos Sainz at the Formula 1 Las Vegas Grand Prix | Angela Weiss/AFP via Getty

It isn’t even just Carlos Sainz at this point.

The Las Vegas Grand Prix has been a mess since construction began, angering residents and everyone else in the path. Traffic has been horrible for months, and the track is sub-par at best. The Grand Prix started in the middle of the night on Friday to spectacular mess.

Even though Max Verstappen and the Oracle Red Bull Racing F1 team have won the 2023 Constructor Standings by a lot, the rest is slightly more competitive. The Mercedes-AMG PETRONAS F1 team has 382 points, and Ferrari has 362 points. Lewis Hamilton has the chance to pull away with Mercedes this weekend, but by a miraculous miracle, Ferrari could get some real points.

TeamF1 Team Standings
Red Bull782
Aston Martin261
Alfa Romeo16
2023 Formula 1 team standings before Las Vegas Grand Prix results

There isn’t much hope in the 2023 Formula 1 Driver Standings for Sainz or Charles Leclerc, as they’re currently in sixth and seventh, respectively. In the day’s first practice, Sainz hit a manhole cover in the street and damaged his engine. With that, Formula 1 reports he was handed a 10-place grid drop, and any hope of recovery for Ferrari is essentially gone.

Carlos Sainz and the Ferrari Curse have arrived at the Las Vegas Grand Prix

Carlos Sainz at the F1 Vegas Grand Prix
Ferrari driver Carlos Sainz on track at the F1 Vegas Grand Prix | Jared C. Tilton – Formula 1/Formula 1 via Getty Images

The Las Vegas Grand Prix ended the first practice ever with Carlos Sainz hitting the drain cover track. Before that happened, his teammate, Charles Leclerc, had the fastest lap time of 1:40.909. So it would obviously end in a red flag only nine minutes in.

Announcers on F1 TV noted significant reliability issues with the Ferrari team just before the car stopped. You can see the “Stop the Car” message pop up on the steering wheel as you watch all the drama below.

The marshalls tried to clear off the track, but it was clear something else was wrong. Eventually, the FIA confirmed a drain cover was on the track, and the session was stopped. That wasn’t before Esteban Ocon also hit the drain and received damage.

Ferrari starts every weekend with a lot of hope, but it always seems to end with some sort of this-could-only-happen-to-Ferrari disaster.

Sainz and Ferrari have a lot of work to do at the Vegas Grand Prix

Carlos Sainz at the Formula 1 Las Vegas Grand Prix
Carlos Sainz at the Formula 1 Las Vegas Grand Prix | Angela Weiss/AFP via Getty

Once FP started, Carlos Sainz and Charles Leclerc had the fastest laps and landed in second and first place. Verstappen finished in sixth, but he doesn’t really care at this point (he even said so). There is still P3 later in the day and then qualifying, but it would be unlikely Sainz can find enough points to make up for his 10-place grid penalty and everything else.

After the F1 Las Vegas Grand Prix is over, only one race is left for the 2023 Formula 1 season. Abu Dhabi is known for its shenanigans, but nothing too dramatic can happen with the standings by then. Realistically, unless Sainz and Leclerc finish in the front row of this race and Verstappen gets zero points, nothing will change with the standings, either.

Another day for us, another cursed run for Ferrari.


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