Although he did not get to spray champagne immediately after the race, the Spaniard took his entire McLaren team up to the podium to celebrate once he had waited for clearance in a stewards' investigation of his own regarding using DRS under yellow flags.
Sainz said: "What a day! It's a weird first podium not being there straight after the race, but I'm extremely happy with our race today.
"To finish P3 coming all the way from the back of the grid was a big challenge, but we fought until the end with everything we had.
"It was a very eventful race and I think I was the only car to do a one-stop strategy. It was really difficult to hold the other midfield cars behind after the two Safety Car re-starts, but I managed to defend my position well and took advantage of what happened at the front of the race.
"A good first stint, a great pit-stop from the guys and a very challenging and long stint to bring it home and finish P3 for the first time in my career.
"Congrats to the whole team, here and back in Woking! My first podium is obviously very special but we need to keep pushing to step up there on pure pace! That's what we're really here for, that has to be our goal!"
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