Former Formula 1 driver and championship runner-up David Coulthard reckons that the pressure of performing for Ferrari is different for Charles Leclerc than it is for Sebastian Vettel, as the latter is the one who is expected to compete for the title.
In 2018, the Scuderia made the decision to replace Kimi Raikkonen with wonderkid rookie Leclerc, in what was a deviation from their usual policy of hiring more experienced drivers.
There has, to say the least, been some teething problems between the new team-mates, as Ferrari’s 2019 season so far has been negatively affected by team orders, some of which have been criticised. As recently as the Spanish Grand Prix, Vettel and Leclerc swapped positions not once, but twice, in a desperate attempt to catch Mercedes, only for the strategy to fall flat.
The German has came in for more criticism than his younger counterpart, particularly within the partisan Italian media, but Coulthard believes Leclerc benefits from having a different kind of pressure put upon him.
"Charles does what he has to do," he told Auto Bild.
"He wants to be faster. If he sees a gap, he gets in. Sebastian has another goal: to make the Ferrari a winning car.
“So here we are dealing with two different types of pressure.
"Seb has to win, anything else isn't good enough. Charles has it easier. He just has to be faster than Sebastian and prove that he can beat a four-time world champion and has a great future.”
Ferrari have had a poor start to the new season and are already 96 points adrift of Mercedes in the constructor’s championship after five races.
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