‘He’s super-quick, but….,” Jacques Villeneuve is uncertain if Charles Leclerc is on the same level as Max Verstappen

Jacques Villeneuve feels that Charles Leclerc could do even better this season, and is unsure if he is on the same level as Max Verstappen.

Charles Leclerc (L) and Max Verstappen (R)
Jacques Villeneuve feels that Charles Leclerc could do even better this season, and is unsure if he is on the same level as Max Verstappen.
FirstSportz News

Charles Leclerc started the season off very strong. He won two out of the first three races – Bahrain and Australia. However, since that, victory seems to have eluded him. In fact, Leclerc only has 1 podium in the last 6 races. A lot of the blame goes on the F1-75’s reliability – as the Monegasque retired from the lead twice in the last four races.

But the loss of points has not always been Ferrari’s fault, case in point – In Imola, Leclerc spun and narrowly touched the barriers while trying to chase down Sergio Perez and damaged his front wing, which meant he took 7 points less in the race, and perhaps he had made a mistake in Miami as well when chasing down Max Verstappen.

On the other hand, Verstappen has not made any notable mistakes during the races and has finished on the podium in every race that he has seen the chequered flag. While Max Verstappen’s 49 points lead may be due in part to Ferrari and Leclerc’s misfortunes, Jacques Villeneuve actually doubts if Leclerc can keep up with Verstappen.

Also Read: “If he beats Lewis, his career is made”: Jacques Villeneuve dissects George Russell’s mindset for his debut year at Mercedes

Jacques Villeneuve was not satisfied with Leclerc’s performance in Montreal

Charles Leclerc
Charles Leclerc finished P5 in Canada after starting from the back of the grid, and won ‘Driver of the Day’ but Jacques Villeneuve thinks that he could have finished higher.

As reported by GPBlog, Jacques Villeneuve agrees that while it is beyond dispute that Charles Leclerc is fast, there are still a few areas where he needs to work on.

“He’s super-quick, but right now he still makes a few little mistakes that he shouldn’t. Imola, for example, [but sometimes] then he’s not helped by the team. That’s the energy they all have together.”

Right now we know he’s fast, he’s aggressive, is he a world champion? Is he like Max? How is he under pressure when it’s money time for the championship? That’s what we still need to find out.”

Villeneuve was also disappointed by Leclerc’s performance in Montreal, where the Monegasque finished 5th. The former world champion thinks that he could (or should) have finished higher.

“When you’re in a Ferrari, you should only have a Red Bull in front of you. Before the race, they took those penalties because it’s Montreal, and in their minds, the worst they could finish was P4 having [Sergio] Perez still in the race – and they didn’t.”

Villeneuve feels that Ferrari’s slow pit stop didn’t help Leclerc’s race, and he came out several places behind where he should actually have been coming out.

“It’s good salvaging of points, but it’s not good enough. They had a poor pit stop and got out behind four cars instead of ahead of them. Fighting to get those positions killed their tires, and that’s why they didn’t get the Mercedes in the end.”

Charles Leclerc and Max Verstappen will both be looking for victory in Silverstone, as both potentially had their victories taken away through no faults of their own – Max Verstappen retired after he and Hamilton made contact going into Copse, and when Charles Leclerc took the lead, he was unable to keep it, perhaps due to engine issues. Mercedes may also be back competing at the front in Silverstone, and that makes for a tantalizing prospect.

Also Read: Charles Leclerc given hope in title race: “Still plenty of time to recover”

Also Read: “He is always in attack mode,” Jos Verstappen credited for creating a “racing monster” in Max Verstappen