Leclerc explains feelings toward Vettel & Ferrari

Ferrari once again caused a controversy in Russia – specifically Sebastian Vettel.

The German refused to let his team-mate Charles Leclerc overtake him in the initial phase, although he received a clear instruction from the team – and this had already been agreed before the race.

TJ13 now believes that Leclerc’s position within Ferrari has completely undermined it’s current structure. Indeed if I were to explain my feeling honestly, Lerclerc currently holds far too much away in the team, in a revered fashion of misplaced respect to the deceased Ferrari CEO Sergio Marchionne. Leclerc is a dead man’s Champion and Vettel was yesterday’s news.


Still, Leclerc seems to be happy to wait, keeping feelings close to his chest and towing (excuse the pun) the company line.

In the end, the exchange of the two cars took place later in the pits.


“At the start I went to the left to give Seb the slipstream,” reports Leclerc and explains:

“I knew that he would overtake. We knew that. Then we had to switch back again, and we did that later in the race at the pit stop.

“If Lewis and Seb drive side by side, then of course I have to give Seb the advantage and not Lewis

“That’s normal. That was decided before,” says Leclerc and adds that the agreement was “respected” because he passed Vettel again at the pit stop. But it’s also clear that the German didn’t make room voluntarily at first.

“I don’t know. I think the situation was quite tricky,” Leclerc avoids a bit and explains:

“There was a safety car immediately [after the start] and then it was quite difficult. Following became difficult…

“For two or three laps, I tried to stay as close as possible. But then following became difficult – especially in the first and second sector. The tyres overheated and I dropped back a bit,” reports Leclerc.


But he “trusted the team 100 percent” that he would get the position back. 

That’s what they did at the pit stop. Consequently, the relationship of trust with Vettel had not suffered either.

“We have to trust each other,” says Leclerc. In certain situations it is important for the team “to know that you can count on the other car”.

That applies in both directions. “Trust is still there,” emphasises the 21-year-old. By the way, it wasn’t an option for him to break the agreement at the start. “I had absolutely no reason to fight [against Vettel],” he clarifies and adds: “As I said, I completely trusted that we’d switch back afterwards.

There was no reason to take any risks at that point. That’s why I didn’t fight back.”

With Vettel’s retirement, the issue was settled anyway – at least in this race.




6 responses to “Leclerc explains feelings toward Vettel & Ferrari

  1. The issue wasn’t settled properly because Leclerc should have won the race ahead of the Silver Arrows. The fact that he was not allowed to pass Vettel in the opening laps put him at a later disadvantage, which meant that the team lost out entirely.
    Binotto needs to read the Riot Act firmly and tell Vettel that he is not bigger than the team. This could and should have been another win for Ferrari and Leclerc and, instead, the Mercedes dog ran away with the Ferrari bone (as the Dutch expression goes).

    As far as Leclerc goes, he is the ideal poster boy for Ferrari – young, quick, speaks Italian and French and English – who could want more? No wonder Vettel is getting increasingly fed up.

    • Their is no evidence that Leclerc was “disadvantaged” by being behind Vettel. Hamilton on medium tyres was from lap 1 until Leclerc pitted, closer to Leclerc, than Leclerc was to Vettel. That ends the dirty air argument. I guess in the race you watched the VSC and safety car didn’t happen. I also guess that when Leclerc reneged on giving Vettel a tow at Monza, after Vettel had done it for Leclerc as they had agreed, and Binotto said “you are forgiven”, Leclerc must believe he now has the right to demand whatever he wants from the team. And if they don’t Todt Jr is in the garage likely threatening that if Charlie doesn’t get what he wants he’ll run to daddy in the FIA.

      • The Mercs overheat their tyres less quick than the Ferrari’s especially in dirty air the difference is even bigger. Also Hamilton was on a yellow tyre, Leclerc and Vettel on red which are a bit more fragile.

  2. ” I gave him the slipstream”… That remark bothers me a bit. Slipstreams are there for the taking, not for the giving (and I think we have seen that in Monza qualifying) Leclerc had to drive somewhere, and he didn’t create any special circumstance for Vettel. If there were any team orders, Vettel could only have covered Leclerc’s ass, which he didn’t: he overtook.

    Leclerc is a more constant driver than Vettel, but I take spectacular over constant every time.

  3. Pingback: Wolff gives reasons for lack of pace | thejudge13·

  4. I don’t really understand this line “TJ13 now believes that Leclerc’s position within Ferrari has completely undermined it’s current structure. Indeed if I were to explain my feeling honestly”.

    Leclerc helped his teammate at the start per agreement, and was merely asking for respecting the agreement. How was that undermining the “structure”. And where is the proof of the undermined process?

    I thought this site provided some good information which many other mainstream sites don’t, now I’m not sure which “news” are your feelings, and which are genuine.

    btw, according to the source, Vettel didn’t even have the race pace, Leclerc simply fell back to preserve tyres and maintained the clean air gap until the pit stop.

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