Charles Leclerc has revealed he felt “helpless” as he tried to adapt his driving style to overcome Ferrari’s problems with tyre degradation during the French Grand Prix.
Until the race at the Paul Ricard Circuit, Leclerc had scored points in every race he had started so far this season but a disastrous downturn in form caused by higher track temperatures left him down in 16th place at Paul Ricard.
Asked if there was anything he could do as a driver to get around the issues, Leclerc said: “This is the biggest reason why we did a second stop, basically, to try something different.
“We would have dropped out of the points if we wouldn’t have stopped another time, so it was ideal for the race that if we could try and learn something. I tried a different approach and it didn’t change much.
“There’s not much we can do now but obviously we can always do better as drivers and we are also looking into that to try and improve the way we manage the tyres, but I felt a little bit helpless there, trying different things.”
Leclerc happy with relentless racing
Monégasque driver Leclerc is one of two non-Mercedes or Red Bull drivers in the top six in the championship, sitting on 52 points but 24 points behind McLaren rival Lando Norris.
This weekend is the eighth race of the season, the 25th in a calendar year, and with Ferrari 16 points behind McLaren in fourth, Leclerc is happy to be back racing straight away in a bid to get Ferrari’s third-place challenge back on track.
“I love what I do and I just really, really enjoy driving, so I am always very, very happy to be back on track,” he added. “Thursday is a bit boring, it’s not my favourite day, but then Friday, Saturday, Sunday I love what I do.
“I just really, really enjoy it and then leave on Sunday night, so we’ve got a good life, I am very happy that there are so many races, but it is definitely trickier for other people in the team.”
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