Charles Leclerc rued the three-place grid penalty he was slapped with for the 2023 Monaco Grand Prix after impeding McLaren’s Lando Norris in Qualifying, claiming he couldn’t do much after that.
The Formula 1 Monaco Grand Prix on Sunday was another miserable home race for Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc finishing sixth after qualifying third, but dropping down three places on the starting grid as the stewards deemed that he has impeded Lando Norris in Q3.
That was another error from the Ferrari pit wall, not giving their driver heads up about the approaching McLaren, costing him the chance of a podium in front of his home crowds as, starting from sixth and with no pace advantage, Leclerc had no chance to advance up the order.
Asked of the penalty ruined his race, Leclerc responded: “Yeah, exactly. After [qualifying], the three grid places penalty, starting sixth there wasn’t much more [I could do].
Ferrari didn’t have the pace to challenge
“The pace wasn’t great today,” he added. “I mean, it was actually quite good on the hard [tyres]. On the slicks it was good, but there is nothing to do here. It was basically a waiting game and then, when we started to push, the tyres had gone away a little bit.”
Ferrari was hoping to challenge for a better result in Monaco, given that characteristics of the street track would reduce Red Bull’s dominance especially in Qualifying, which was somehow true as Max Verstappen took pole by only 0.084s after a tough session.
But it was Aston Martin’s Fernando Alonso that was pushing the Dutchman and not Leclerc, who was third fastest, not happy with the behavior of his SF-23 all weekend.
“We are not happy with where we are,” Leclerc pointed out after enduring what could be labeled an anonymous race around his hometown.
“We’ve got a lot of work to do to recover performance, because for now we’re just too far away,” he concluded.