Carlos Sainz
Carlos Sainz / skysports

Carlos Sainz has admitted he is still not comfortable with the 2018 Renault car as the Spaniard bids to match the pace and form of team-mate Nico Hulkenberg.

The Spaniard is effectively on loan with the team this season and is the favourite to replace Daniel Ricciardo at Red Bull if the Australian departs.

But Sainz has been out-qualified by Hulkenberg in every event so far this season and admitted he was still struggling to adapt to the RS18 ahead of this weekend’s Spanish GP, the 23-year-old’s home race.

Asked if he was comfortable with the Renault, Sainz conceded:Definitely not. It’s not one hundred per cent confident yet. There are still things to test, things to adapt to, things to make the car be well-suited to me and it’s something that I’m taking a lot of care of. It’s coming little by little and sooner or later it will be one hundred per cent.”¬†

Renault, like most of the teams, have brought a series of car upgrades for the Barcelona event and Sainz is hopeful he will soon find his 2018 groove.

“We’re talking about very small margins. In Formula One, those very small margins in one qualifying lap they can easily fall for you, so I’m not worried because it’s very, very small, what I need to adapt and what I need from the car. As soon as this comes, every piece will fall in.”

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