Leclerc: Saturday is very strong, Sunday, things fall apart

Leclerc: Saturday is very strong, Sunday, things fall apart

Leclerc: Saturday is very strong, Sunday, things fall apart
Charles Leclerc highlighted messy race executions from Ferrari on Sundays’ races as the area to improve for the team ahead of 2023, since they are usually strong in Saturdays’ qualifying sessions.

The chances for Leclerc to fight for the Formula 1 Drivers’ Title dwindles over the course of the season as Max Verstappen got into his stride, and they finally evaporated back at the 2022 Japanese Grand Prix when the Dutchman sealed the Title fight, securing his second Crown.

Although the Constructors’ Championship is still not secured, but it is a matter of time before Red Bull, 165 points ahead of Ferrari, secure that as well with the United Stated Grand Prix being the first of the final four races this season.

Ahead of this weekend’s grand prix in Austin, Leclerc reflected on the season that went by and pointed out what needs to change going into the final races, preparing for another Title challenge in 2023.

He said, quoted by F1’s official website: “It’s Sunday execution as a whole, it’s loads of things. It’s tyre management, as we’ve seen at the last races it is a weak point, communication, strategy, reliability.

“Just to be a stronger team on the Sunday and finalise the weekend in the strongest way possible because the Saturday is often very strong, but the Sunday, things often fall apart,” he added.

There was some improvement

Leclerc admitted he has felt some improvement; he said: “Well I think for strategy, communication, etcetera, there have been a few races now that we’ve been working on it and I’ve seen positive signs so that is good.

“Then there is the tyre management, which we’ve seen in the last few races, and this is a bit more difficult; we need to identify all the causes of it.

“But this is the continuous work we are doing, and we are getting better at. I think we’ve seen it this year: At some races we’ve been very good at tyre management and in specific situations like in Japan the Sunday was cooler, it was raining also and then when it is a bit of an unexpected situation, that is where we probably are not as good as maybe Red Bull is, on that we need to work,” the Ferrari ace explained.

The Monegasque hailed the step forward Ferrari made between the old era and the new era of ground effect, but lamented missed opportunites.

“When I look back at the season, coming from 2020 into 2021 which has been very difficult for the team and this year we did a huge step forward in terms of performance,” he said, “but there were loads of missed opportunities and parts of the season where there were too many mistakes so it’s been a frustrating season overall.

“But on the other hand, I’m sure it will help us to get better in the future,” the five-time F1 race winner insisted,

“Of course, I am disappointed but I need to look forward and make the best out of the last part of the season, I keep my head up,” Leclerc concluded.

Leclerc now will be targeting the runner-up position in the Championship, currently occupied by Red Bull’s Sergio Perez who leads Leclerc by one point for now.