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Vettel handling errors and Leclerc's emergence - Ferrari

Vettel handling errors and Leclerc's emergence - Ferrari

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Vettel handling errors and Leclerc's emergence - Ferrari

Vettel handling errors and Leclerc's emergence - Ferrari

Ferrari team principal Mattia Binotto says Sebastian Vettel has handled a tough start to the season and the emergence of team-mate Charles Leclerc well.

The Scuderia's strong performances in pre-season prompted suggestions that Vettel could be the title favourite in 2019, but a championship bid has never gotten off the ground.

While Ferrari have struggled to unlock the SF90's full potential, Vettel has made costly errors in Bahrain, Britain and Canada, which ultimately cost him victory in the stewards' room.

These disappointments and Leclerc's emergence with two pole positions in his first Ferrari season had led to suggestions that Vettel could retire, although he has firmly shot them down.

And Binotto is confident that the four-time world champion will remain an asset for Ferrari moving forward, with potentially favourable races next on the schedule in Belgium and Italy.

"He's dealing well with Charles, they are two good teammates," Binotto told Motorsport.com.

"He is very smart, he is very motivated, and I think that even for him it could've been a lot more difficult, that start to the season.

"But overall I think he knows how good he can be, and he's smart enough to understand the entire situation.

"I think he's still very supportive with the team, with himself, and he knows that he is an important pillar of our team for the present and for the future."

Vettel won at Spa-Francorchamps last year but has not secured a grand prix victory since, having dropped out of last year's title challenge amid a similar run of on-track mistakes, including a collision with Lewis Hamilton at Monza.

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