Leclerc says the hole to Purple Bull is larger than it appears

JEDDAH, Saudi Arabia – Charles Leclerc took little consolation in qualifying 0.155 seconds off Sergio Perez’s pole place time on the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix, saying Ferrari’s hole to Purple Bull is much higher than he instructed. the session on Saturday.

Leclerc was second quickest however will drop to twelfth on the grid with a ten-place penalty after reliability points on the Bahrain Grand Prix noticed him exceed the variety of digital management gadgets allowed for the season.

Regardless of the obvious enchancment in efficiency relative to Purple Bull for the reason that season opener in Bahrain, when Leclerc was 0.3sec off pole place, the Ferrari driver was cautious in discussing the progress of his staff after defending champion Max Verstappen withdrew from qualifying with a driveshaft failure. .

“I put every part in my lap, however I really feel that the hole that we’re seeing between me and Checo is just not the actual one, I believe that the hole is way larger than that,” he mentioned. “And ultimately my purpose is to beat Purple Bull, it’s to not end second, third or fourth or no matter. So there’s nonetheless lots of work to do earlier than I get to their degree.”

Leclerc mentioned Ferrari was on par with Mercedes, Aston Martin and Alpine when it comes to race tempo, however he anticipated Verstappen, beginning fifteenth, to interrupt by the pack.

“For tomorrow now we have a ten place grid penalty, so it will likely be beginning the race a bit on the defensive, however I’ll do completely every part to get again to the entrance.”

“We’ll even have Max behind, however the Purple Bulls are in a league of their very own for now, so I’m fairly certain he’ll be again on the entrance fairly rapidly. For us, we’ll attempt to deal with ourselves, we’re roughly on the similar race tempo. from Alpine, Mercedes and Aston Martin, so it ought to be a very good combat, however let’s wait and see tomorrow.”