Leclerc: Ferrari "getting there" against Red Bull on Sunday F1 race gains – Motorsport.com

The Scuderia flew out of the blocks to win two of the opening three races this season as it sought to end a title drought dating back to its 2008 constructors’ championship triumph.
But the combination of strategic disasters (notably at Silverstone and Budapest) plus its early unreliability has contributed greatly to its drivers’ and teams’ championship challenge collapsing.
Red Bull, in turn, collected its first constructors’ crown since 2013 with three rounds to spare thanks to Max Verstappen’s victory last weekend in the United States Grand Prix.
With its title designs slipping, Ferrari has turned its attention to preparing for 2023 by using the final races of this year to better execute its pitstops procedures and strategy calls.
While Leclerc reckoned the F1-75 still could not fully match the major gains in pace Red Bull could find between qualifying and the race, the Monegasque said Ferrari was “getting there”.
Charles Leclerc, Ferrari
Photo by: Erik Junius
Speaking in the press conference ahead of the Mexican GP this weekend, Leclerc addressed the chances of ending a winless run stretching back to the French round in late July.
He said: “It is difficult to know for now.
“I still believe that Red Bull will be the team to beat on Sunday.
“They always seem to find something from the Saturday to the Sunday that we didn’t quite find yet, but we are getting there.”
When asked by Motorsport.com to clarify the areas where Ferrari felt most confident it was catching up to Red Bull, Leclerc put the focus on race execution rather than outright pace.
However, he reckoned that any of the attention given to extracting more speed would pay off soon enough given the team’s ability to improve rapidly, in his own view.
He continued: “I was mostly speaking about the Sunday execution, not the performance in itself. But as I’ve been mentioning, since a few races, we are working a lot on the strategy, on the communication side of it also.
“This I feel like we are doing steps in the right direction. But of course, there is still the gap of performance on the Sunday to the Red Bull that we still need to find and improve.
“On that, we are working. We haven’t found yet the solution. But we are working well.
“Once we are focusing on one thing, we normally improve very quickly on it. So, I’m confident that the results will come soon.”
Leclerc enters the weekend second in the drivers’ standings, only two points ahead of Red Bull’s Sergio Perez.
2022 F1 Mexico Grand Prix session timings and preview
Red Bull handed $7m fine, aero testing reduction for cost cap breach
Mexican GP: Sainz tops disrupted first F1 practice from Leclerc
Has the US GP already left expectations tempered for F1 in 2023?
Ten things we learned from the 2022 United States Grand Prix
Leclerc fears “nightmare” Mexico F1 race after Ferrari qualifying woes
Leclerc won’t take “crazy risks” to fight back from US GP grid penalty
The 10 steps Ferrari needs to take to be a real F1 challenger
Ferrari unhappy with “very limited” impact of FIA F1 penalty against Red Bull
Sainz: FIA “a bit easy” on Russell with US GP F1 collision penalty
Why few would blame Leclerc if he leaves Ferrari in future
Live: F1 Mexican Grand Prix as it happens
Follow along for minute-by-minute updates of Formula 1’s Mexico City Grand Prix.
Bowman: Recovery was “pretty difficult” but he’s ‘100%’
Alex Bowman said Sunday he’s thankful for the opportunity to get back in his car prior to the end of NASCAR Cup Series season.
Wolff: Mexico is Mercedes’ best F1 chance yet of winning this season
Toto Wolff believes today’s Mexican Grand Prix feels like Mercedes’ best chance yet of winning a Formula 1 race this season, starting from second and third on the grid.
Motorsport Games: Australia seals final gold medal with GT Sprint win
Matt Campbell triumphed in the GT Sprint race to secure gold for Team Australia as the FIA Motorsport Games drew to a close at Paul Ricard.
Can home hero Perez provide Mexico’s latest magic F1 moment?
In the long history of Mexican involvement in F1 there has yet to be a Mexican winner of the Mexican GP. Is that about to change, asks BEN EDWARDS?
The compromises involved in delivering optimal F1 ride quality
Ride quality as a concept is often misunderstood. PAT SYMONDS clarifies exactly what it means and explains its importance in racing cars – especially in a Formula 1 context
How early struggles and Red Bull rejection equipped Perez for F1’s top team
The 2022 Mexican Grand Prix will celebrate the 60th anniversary of Formula 1’s first visit to the country in 1962, when local hero Ricardo Rodriguez was killed in a non-championship event at the circuit known today as the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez. No Mexican driver since has had the potential to win their home grand prix, but Sergio Perez aims to change that – as OLEG KARPOV discovers.
Has the US GP already left expectations tempered for F1 in 2023?
OPINION: In the latter stages of 2022’s Formula 1 season, Max Verstappen has proved irrepressible as he collected another inspired win at the US Grand Prix. With Red Bull at the top, Ferrari losing its edge, and Mercedes still in recovery, hopes of a two- or three-way battle for 2023 look increasingly slim
Why Hamilton could be wrong: Mercedes 2022 F1 win chances aren’t over
OPIONION: Max Verstappen hunted down and defeated Lewis Hamilton in last weekend’s US Grand Prix at Austin – in scenes that were very 2021 after Red Bull botched his second stop. That led to Hamilton effectively declaring Mercedes’ chances of winning a Formula 1 race in 2022 to be over. But might there actually be hope yet for the Silver Arrows?
The pre-race call that hurt Hamilton’s chance to stop Verstappen’s US GP charge
Max Verstappen’s recovery from a bodged pitstop to win the United States Grand Prix demonstrated Red Bull’s dominance in 2022, but in truth key pre-race decisions helped swing the advantage back to the newly-crowned Formula 1 world constructors’ champions after its pitlane blunder. Regardless, the Dutch driver’s performance was a fitting tribute to Dietrich Mateschitz whose death during the Austin race weekend rocked the paddock
United States Grand Prix Driver Ratings 2022
In a frantic and breathless Formula 1 United States Grand Prix there are zero maximum scores in the latest Autosport driver ratings, but many starring roles alongside some unwanted villain tags during the Circuit of the Americas’ headline act
The questions and concerns resulting from F1’s relentless growth plan
OPINION: Formula 1 seems determined to grow and grow and has announced a planned 24-race calendar for next season that will be its biggest ever. But is there a risk, asks MATT KEW, that too much of a good thing could end up being detrimental to the championship?


Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.

You may also like