Charles Leclerc says he has a ‘beast’ at his disposal in the Ferrari F1-75
Charles Leclerc hailed his Ferrari F1-75 as a “beast” after his dominant display at the Australian Grand Prix.
The Monegasque joined a very exclusive group of drivers when he completed the grand slam at Albert Park, that being pole, victory, the fastest lap and leading every lap, becoming the 26th driver to pull of this achievement in Formula 1.
Even with Max Verstappen’s retirement from P2 factored in, Leclerc never looked like finishing any lower than P1 in Australia, an all-conquering performance that would surprise even himself as the F1-75 went into “beast” mode.
Asked by Sky Italia if he was surprised to be so dominant over Red Bull at the Australian GP, Leclerc replied: “Honestly, yes. I put everything together in the qualifying lap but we thought Red Bull in the race were much closer.
“Instead our car was a beast. I could do everything I wanted.
“This is the first time we managed to win keeping everything under control, but what a car we had. We did a good job throughout the whole weekend, but without such a car this success would not be possible.”
Of course, we are still only three races into the 2022 campaign, but both Leclerc and Ferrari have already established very healthy leads at the top of the Drivers’ and Constructors’ Championships respectively.
Leclerc leads the Drivers’ standings by 34 points over Mercedes’ George Russell, while his closest competitor in terms of pace out on the track, Verstappen, is down in P6 having seen his Red Bull RB18 give up on him twice in three races while running P2.
So, Leclerc knows that these are early days in the season still, but takes a lot of confidence from the fact that Ferrari are demonstrating both speed and reliability, the key components to title success.
“Clearly we’re only at the third race of the season, and it’s still early days to think about the championship,” he admitted.
“But if I have to be honest, we have a very strong and very reliable car. We’ve always been in the top positions and we hope to keep going on like this.
“If we do this, we have our chances to win the championship, and this makes me smile after two difficult years both for me and the team.”
Additional reporting by Luca Brambilla
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