While the Maranello line-up acknowledges that it is not yet ready to contest pole positions and victories over Mercedes and Red Bull, currently ‘in another league’ for them, Leclerc brings out the great improvement they have experienced.
Despite Carlos Sainz’s hit in Q2 just by 61 thousandths compared to Lance Stroll, Ferrari seems to have shown that overall the performance of its car for the 2021 season is, at least at first glance, significantly better than last year. The fourth place Charles Leclerc’s qualifying test is evidence of this fact, something that surprised the Monegasque rider himself after the evolution of his rivals in the morning.
«Yesterday I thought I could reach the second line, while today I thought something less because in FP2 I was surprised by the speed of the McLarens », confessed # 16 about the papaya orange cars, especially that of a Lando Norris that was only a few thousandths of the pole position in a section of the session. “They were very fast, they found something they didn’t have yesterday,” he pointed out.
The soft tires will allow Leclerc to attack Verstappen at the start.
However, Leclerc was defined as “happy” by the balance sheet of the weekend so far. «In the end I did a good lap. Although I must admit that Mercedes and Red Bull are on another planetWe are only 3 tenths away from them, which gives us hope to do well, “he said. «I made a small mistake on my lap that cost us, probably, 7-8 hundredths. I was a bit frustrated on the radio, but then looking at the classification, I realized that I still wouldn’t have won any position on the grid.
«I am happy with the SF21, is well balanced; now we have to find overall performance. It has nothing especially badAlthough the overall package is not yet at the level of Mercedes or Red Bull. I think starting soft will help us, that’s why we made this decision. However, only tomorrow will we know if we were right, “concluded an expectant Leclerc waiting to see what the race holds for Ferrari.