Carlos Sainz says his first run in a Formula 1 car was the 'best day of his life'
Spaniard drove for Toro Rosso at Silverstone
By William Esler at Silverstone. Last Updated: 17/09/13 1:32pm
A beaming Carlos Sainz could hardly hide his delight after getting his first experience in a Formula 1 car at Silverstone.
The Spaniard spent the afternoon at the wheel of the Toro Rosso and set the second fastest time of the day - just 0.044 seconds behind the Italian squad's race driver Daniel Ricciardo.
The son of the double World Rally Champion completed 39 laps and described it as the "best day of his life."
"The feeling was completely unbelievable," he said.
"In January I wasn't even thinking that I would have a chance to step into a Formula 1 car and now I have had half a day at Silverstone - if there is a track that you are going to feel a Formula 1 car and its potential then it is here at Silverstone.
"So for me this day has been the best day of my life and a dream has come true. After jumping out of the car I went and thanked every mechanic and every engineer at Toro Rosso as they have been part of the most important and happiest day of my life."
Sainz surprised many in the paddock when he set the second quickest time of the day, but the Spaniard was not getting carried away with his achievements.
"It is more for you [the media] and Toro Rosso to judge it - it is not up to me," the 18-year-old said.
"Of course you always prefer to see yourself P2 rather than P9, but I could have been two seconds off the pace - I am not sure. It is very difficult to judge with so many factors that can affect it - downforce, kilos - this car can be eight seconds faster or it can be eight seconds slower as there can be such a big difference in fuel loads.
"So I leave it up to you guys to judge because I don't want to really think about how good I have done until they tell me how good I have done."
Sainz currently competes in GP3 with MW Arden and admits it was a massive leap to a Formula 1 car.
"It is a very, very big change," he added.
"Actually this test I was thinking that it was a good bench mark for me to asses my physical point of view - it was very important to see how good physically I am - and to be honest I am more tired when I got out of the car, my body has never had these feelings and is not used to the lateral G-Forces.
"So for sure it is one of my tiredest days but I am pleased to say I never had to rest my neck or step out of the car to stretch. So in this sense I am happy as I didn't have any issues."
On Friday Sainz switches to the sister Red Bull team and will drive the RB9 before handing over to triple World Champion Sebastian Vettel.