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Leclerc credits Vettel for 2019 success

Leclerc credits Vettel for 2019 success

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Leclerc credits Vettel for 2019 success

Leclerc credits Vettel for 2019 success

Charles Leclerc thanked Sebastian Vettel for his helping hand in his maiden season with Ferrari after finishing ahead of the former world champion in the drivers' standings.

Although Leclerc's third-placed finish at the Abu Dhabi GP could yet be wiped out after fuel irregularities were found in his car pre-race, he will maintain P4 ahead of Vettel in the standings even in the event of disqualification.

The Monegasque's tally of seven pole positions was also unrivalled on the grid though 2019, while Leclerc delivered a number of thrilling race performances.

A highlight of the campaign will surely be his victory at the Italian Grand Prix, breaking a nine-year wait for Ferrari success at Monza.

But tensions have often simmered between Leclerc and Vettel and their collision at the Brazilian GP led to a flood of late-season controversy after a year that saw Ferrari struggle to hit their straps until it was too late and Mercedes romped to another title triumph.

However, Leclerc was quick to point out the influence of Vettel after securing, for now, a 10th podium of the season.

"I'm extremely happy about this year, I've learned a huge amount thanks to Seb," Leclerc said.

"It's been a great year, a realisation of a dream since a child to be in Formula 1 with Ferrari, now it's up to me to work and get better and hopefully give them the success they deserve."

Leclerc is just the second driver to beat Vettel inside the same team over the course of a season, following Daniel Ricciardo at Red Bull in 2014.

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