The Ferrari F1 team put an end to Red Bull’s dominant run at last week’s Singapore GP thanks to the efforts of Carlos Sainz. While the Spaniard ended his exploits in P1, Ferrari’s other driver, Charles Leclerc had to settle for a fourth-place finish. Ahead of this week’s Japanese GP, the latter has made it known that the extensive testing that the team did on the SF-23 in Zandvoort has paid massive dividends.
But at the same time, he thinks that the new improvements have moved the car more toward the driving style of Carlos Sainz. Leclerc proved second best to Sainz during most of the sessions at the Singapore GP weekend and was also not able to push the car like him when it came to a single-lap pace.
A lot has been said about the Monegasque driver’s woes in comparison to his teammate and while talking about the SF-23, Leclerc told Autosport, “In Zandvoort, we’ve done many tests. In Monza, we wanted to re-confirm those tests and the understanding we had from the car. From here, we applied everything and it seemed to do a big step forward.”
“Having said that, Singapore has historically been a very good track for us so we need to wait one more race in order to see whether we have done a really good step forward consistently or whether it’s a one-off.” Ferrari has made big strides at the pinnacle of motor racing since the Monza weekend.
Charles Leclerc is still adapting his racing style to the much-improved SF-23
While Charles Leclerc has given credit for the team’s improved performances to the extensive testing that Ferrari did at the Dutch GP, he has also made it known that he is trying his best to adapt his driving style to the improved car. He added, “I’m not completely comfortable with the car at the moment – a bit too much understeer for my liking and I struggle to drive around it.”
“Now it’s up to me to try and catch up.” The 25-year-old is up for the challenge and has made it quite clear that he is going to give it full beans in order to get on top of the SF-23 as soon as possible. Leclerc is desperate to be on equal terms with Sainz and for this reason, the upcoming Japanese GP will be a fascinating watch.
Congrats to the team and Carlos for the amazing victory. Did my part in the first stint and then got unlucky with the safety car and lost too many positions. So proud of the steps forward done by the team in the last few weekends, let’s keep pushing ❤️ pic.twitter.com/EOhtljxQ6e
Charles Leclerc managed a third place at last year’s race at the free-flowing Suzuka International Race Course and keeping this in view, he would be heading to Japan high on confidence. Ferrari is expected to be competitive during the upcoming weekend and several eyes will be on the two Ferrari drivers for various reasons.
Rishabh Negi has been working as an F1 author at FirstSportz for over 2 years and has so far written over 2000 articles. From writing entriguing short news copies to writing well-researched long stables, he is extremely adept at doing pretty much everything. Rishabh ardently follows the pinnacle of motor racing and is also a passionate supporter of the Arsenal football team. He has done his Master's degree from the Delhi School of Economics and sees writing about F1, as something, that allows him to disconnect from the everyday ups and downs of life.
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