Hamilton and Vettel heap praise on impressive Leclerc


Formula 1's big guns Lewis Hamilton and Sebastian Vettel both admit to have been highly impressed by Charles Leclerc's highly impressive performance in qualifying.

The Sauber rookie successfully made it into Q3, turning around his fortunes after a problematic couple of sessions on Friday.

He then clocked in with a time good enough for a spot on the fourth row of Sunday's French Grand Prix grid, much to Hamilton and Vettel's amazement.

"There’s a lot of pressure for him, being here in the south of France, so it’s really, really good," said Hamilton.

"I’m happy for him, particularly in that car, he’s done a great job with what he has – probably even more, which is what you hope from a good driver."

Vettel echoed his arch-rival's praise for both team and driver.

"I saw on the screen that Fred [Vasseur, Sauber boss] was happy so I knew one of his drivers did well in Q2," said the German.

"Eighth is an impressive result, they are still quite a long way behind with the car.

"For him he’s doing the job, it’s good for him and for Sauber as well to be up there and have chance to score points."

After a difficult start to his 2018 campaign, when he initially struggled to come to grips with Formula 1 and Sauber's C37 chassis, Leclerc put his head down and improved his driving significantly, and has clearly outpaced since his experienced team mate Marcus Ericsson.

The 20-year-old Monegasque scored his maiden championship points in Baku, with an impressive sixth place finish, and followed up the performance with another two runs in the points in Spain and Canada.

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