Charles Leclerc makes complete U-turn on Ferrari demand

Mick Schumacher drives his father’s Ferrari F2003-GA in October

We use your sign-up to provide content in ways you’ve consented to and to improve our understanding of you. This may include adverts from us and 3rd parties based on our understanding. You can unsubscribe at any time. More info

Charles Leclerc has made a U-turn on his call for Ferrari to adopt team orders as new boss Frederic Vasseur takes control of the team. Last season, Leclerc questioned why Ferrari bosses failed to give him priority over his team-mate in key moments.

Some of the decisions ultimately cost him points in his bid to challenge Max Verstappen for the title. However, the 25-year-old has now accepted the team should have no number one driver and explained that he relished fighting Sainz. Leclerc said: “I agree with this philosophy.

“It’s important for Carlos and I to be fully motivated and do the best possible job at the start of the season and we have to push each other to perform at our best, and at one point in the season, if one driver is clearly in contention to win the championship, I’m sure the team will do everything possible to ensure that the driver fighting for the title does so in the best possible conditions.”

Last year Leclerc admitted he was “frustrated” over Ferrari’s refusal to use team orders to allow him to pass Carlos Sainz in Brazil. He also urged race engineers to “do something” as he waited to be let past Sainz at the British Grand Prix.

The Spaniard went on to win in Silverstone while Leclerc dropped down to P4 on an afternoon where Verstappen struggled after an early puncture. Axed Ferrari team principal Mattia Binotto refused to take sides last season and appeared to chastise Leclerc after he argued back with a finger-pointing rant after the chequered flag in Britain.

Ferrari lifted the covers off their new SF-23 in a glitzy ceremony in Maranello. After unveiling the new car, Leclerc and Sainz got behind the wheel at the team’s own Fiorano test track.

Ferrari star Charles Leclerc makes feelings on new car clear  [INSIGHT]
Vasseur announces significant Ferrari changes after strategy errors [ANALYSIS]
Carlos Sainz risks causing headache with Charles Leclerc comments  [COMMENT]

New boss Vasseur has confirmed he will not interfere with the two drivers early on in the campaign with both free to take the fight to Red Bull. But, the Frenchman warned he will be prepared to “take action” at some stage in the campaign if he feels it could help the team’s title ambitions.

He explained: “I think it’s the same everywhere that we have two very good drivers and both of them are able to do the job. We will have the capacity to provide them with exactly the same car and the same structure and the same support. What is clear is that the target is to win with Ferrari, there will be no number one or number two.

“But if at one stage we have to take action, I will take action. It doesn’t matter if it’s one or the other but, if at one stage in the season I have to do something, then I will do it.”

Source: Read Full Article