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Leclerc defence from Hamilton unaffected by Verstappen crash

Leclerc defence from Hamilton unaffected by Verstappen crash

F1 News

Leclerc defence from Hamilton unaffected by Verstappen crash

Leclerc defence from Hamilton unaffected by Verstappen crash

Ferrari team principal Mattia Binotto has dismissed suggestions that Charles Leclerc was cautious in his defence against Lewis Hamilton in the wake of Max Verstappen's violent crash at the British Grand Prix.

Leclerc led every lap at Silverstone until the 50th of 52 when Hamilton scythed down the inside at Copse, leading to the Monégasque running wide and being forced to settle for second place behind the seven-time F1 champion.

The move was made at the same corner as Hamilton's clash with championship rival Verstappen on lap one of the race which saw the Dutchman hurtle into the barriers at 150mph.

Asked by Sky Sports F1 if Leclerc's defence from Hamilton was affected by the earlier incident, Binotto replied: "I don't think so. There was a delta speed between the two cars and the two drivers at that stage.

"It would have been very difficult to keep him behind. It was maybe aggressive in the way he overtook but I think Charles understood very quickly that he would not have reacted to it so it is a good overtaking move, no doubt."

Ferrari work overcomes tyre woes

Three races prior to Leclerc's podium, Ferrari left Paul Ricard scoreless following a nightmare race that saw both drivers plummet out of the points due to serious tyre management issues.

Although similar problems were expected at the high-speed Silverstone circuit, the Scuderia managed to overcome any concerns to secure a double-points finish, with Carlos Sainz sixth.

"We can be happy not only for the result but the overall pace of the car," added Binotto.

"We knew that coming here would have been difficult for us after France, we were suffering a lot from tyre wear.

"We focused back at home, simulations to try to address it and I think we knew Silverstone was another circuit where we may have such an issue because it is high energy into the tyres in the fast corners.

"But now it is three races in a row which we have had good race pace which was one of our weaknesses at the start of the season.

"Happy to see the progress, happy for the team because the team is showing the capability to understand weaknesses and addressing them."

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