“If you play all the cards on the Dakar, it’s complicated”

“The positive part is difficult to find”, regarding what has been the first week of the Dakar for Sainz. An accident left the man from Madrid out of the fight for the Toaureg in the sixth stage and despite the harshness that this implies, Carlos accepts it: “You have to accept it like this, take the positive part and be optimistic.” What is that positive part? “It is hard to find (laughs) after the scare that the pilots and co-pilots gave us”, but that is now part of the past. From now on a second half begins where “The objective is to learn and win stages”, a new challenge begins and the important thing is that, despite everything, “this year’s Dakar, despite the result, I really like it”. The sensations are being positive, “It is a very complete Dakar, with very hard stages and I want that to be put into perspective as well”.

Although there is much to lament about, it is best to highlight all the positive aspects of an edition where, “So far, the roadbook hasn’t caused any problems.” One of the biggest headaches that Sainz had just a year ago has been resolved and Navigation no longer plays “Russian roulette” to decide the winner. Rather, fortune has been in charge of dictating it and perhaps, also, the lack of conclusions with a “very complex” car: “Playing all the cards only on the Dakar and not (do) another race, it’s complicated. We are seeing how difficult it is to run this car in the desert, we need great professionals behind, many engineers, you have to get everyone on the same page, and it is a major challenge”.

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Although many kilometers are necessary To fully understand the operation of the hybrid prototype, there is no plan for how they will face the rest of the season. “Word of honor that there is no plan made”, assures the man from Madrid, who once again insists on the complexity of a project in which we talk about “something else”: “It is a large, very complex project, a very important challenge and I think that people who don’t understand how this car works don’t value it”. Despite everything that has happened, including the variation in feel with the shock, Carlos continues to highlight the value of a project that he maintains his confidence and that for the first time, his family has been able to experience first-hand: “It is good that they have been able to live what the Dakar is, because when you come home and tell it, it’s not the same”. Above all, because it is necessary to be there to verify its hardness.

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