“Leclerc behaves as if he is the leader, but he is not” says Jacques Villeneuve, the 1997 F1 world champion, who believes that Charles Leclerc behaved as if he was the de facto leader of the Ferrari team last Sunday at Silverstone when the Monegasque made it clear over the radio that he was faster than his teammate on the track.
In the first phase of the race, Charles Leclerc was setting a much faster pace than his team-mate Carlos Sainz on track and found himself in the exhaust of the Spaniard’s car very quickly. On lap 16, Leclerc picked up his radio and asked his team: “What do you want me to do? I’m screwing up my race”, before Ferrari finally asked Carlos Sainz to pit four laps later, allowing Leclerc to take the lead.
In the end, the Monegasque driver would not win the British Grand Prix. This was mainly because Ferrari chose to bring Carlos Sainz into the pits to put new soft tyres on his car at the end of the race when a safety car was deployed following Esteban Ocon’s retirement, while Leclerc had to finish the race on worn hard tyres.
For Jacques Villeneuve, who is now a consultant for Canal+ and Sky Sports TV in the paddock, Charles Leclerc behaved as if he was the leader of the Ferrari team, which is in his opinion, not the case: “What he needs to work on is his communication with the team. Of course Sainz was slower yesterday [Sunday], but a one-two was definitely possible. The moment they made a tyre change [at the Safety Car after Ocon retired at the end of the race] it made sense, because he was losing the race at that moment. But that was not the case in the previous phase,” said Jacques Villeneuve in his column for the Dutch website Formule1.nl.
“Then Leclerc spoke as if he was already the leading driver of the team, but he is not, including contractually. It’s too early for that, Sainz still has a chance [at the world championship].
“He scored a lot of points today [at Silverstone] and after a good result and a bad day for the competition, he can be back. Making a decision too early when both drivers still have a chance of winning the title can also cost the team.”
“Eddie Irvine gave Michael Schumacher many points in 1999 and eventually lost the championship. So I don’t think Ferrari will be too happy with the tone on the radio. Leclerc asked for a decision and it came: “Sainz has been asked to pick up the pace”. That should have been enough and the radio messages should have stopped there. There’s no point in insisting, it’s all out there and it’s not good for Ferrari either. It should be done behind closed doors after the race.”
“In any case, it’s the championship that is the big winner of this race, because it got even closer. Who knows, maybe this victory will trigger something in Sainz? Will he now start to take poles or win races more often? I’m really curious to see if the pressure of a championship does anything for him.
“He’s a smart, sensitive guy with a good car. Some people give in under pressure or take their foot off the pedal, while others are launched and are unstoppable as happened with Verstappen. One thing is for sure, Carlos Sainz is no longer the son of Carlos Sainz…he is Carlos Sainz.”
After the British Grand Prix won by Carlos Sainz, the two Ferrari drivers are separated by just eleven points in the standings, with Charles Leclerc third and Sainz fourth. With the halfway point of the season still to come, anything is still possible in the world championship.
Fine then Leclerc should try to overtake his teammate and then both of them end in the wall with ferrari speechless acting like they dont know what happened. Leclerc would have been alot closer in the championship if it werent for Ferarri they are screwing their own chances. Let the fastest man go and leclerc has shown enough times he should be leading the ferrari duo. Jack what are you on about?
Mr venter please speak sense please . If you want to say something then why don’t you talked about why Ferrari put on white wall tyres at the Canadian GP when the red wall tyres was clearly the faster tyre and it would have allowed Sainz to pass max easily but they didn’t they gave Charles the red wall tyre to allow him to make up places but if Sainz had won that race he would have been on two wins for the year and more points for the season . PS you know why Charles engine always blows up its simple for many people who still doesn’t understand what is happening in F1 . The so called equal driver setup does not happen in F1 . They will give driver’s the so called same car but the engine mapping is where they give one driver more power than the other driver and the one getting more power runs the engine close to breaking point and that is why you always see his engine blowing up . When Vettel was at Ferrari on team radio he made a mistake over the team radio asking for more power and they told him it could end up being critical for the engine and his response was I don’t care if the engine gives in . After that engine failure saw the beginning of the end to Vettel at Ferrari and that brought out the brat in Charles because he also at the Russian grand prix said I am faster than Vettel let us swap places and what did Vettel respond. Tell him to catch me and overtake me if he says his faster . What people who have never raced cars don’t know is that you can put in a lot of quick laps behind another car because you get a healthy dose of drs and slip stream. Once you get past the car in front of you then your speed drops off. That is what happened to Charles and he could shake Sainz so what did the team do they brought in Sainz for a tyre change before anyone was gonna pick up on just what happened and that Charles was playing the media to get Ferrari to do his dirty work and swap places with the actual leader of the race at the time .but some how everyone forgets Sainz was the leader of the race and Charles could not catch and overtake him . So Mr venter before saying both drivers would have ended up in the walls please know who the drivers are and realise that Sainz does not cry over the radio like Charles and doesn’t try to drive his teammates off the road to win a race but we have seen that from Charles Leclerc on many occasions
Ferrari get nothing for their driver winning the championship
Personally I think winning the driver’s title is remembered by a lot more people than the constructor’s championship. Could tell immediately that after Jody Scheckter in 79, Michael from 2000-4, and Kimi in 2007, Charles had the best chance of being the next Ferrari WC if not for poor judgement for Scuderia management. Din’t know when last Ferrari won the constructors title.
Can someone please tell Jacques Villeneuve that if we want his opinion, we will give him a call (= Shut up!).