Leclerc sees Ferrari going 'back to reality' in France

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Charles Leclerc isn't expecting to make it a hat trick of pole positions in France this weekend, insisting Ferrari is likely to go "back to reality" at the Circuit Paul Ricard.

Much to the astonishment of Ferrari's rivals, Leclerc put Ferrari's SF20 on pole position in Monaco and in Baku. The Monegasque endured massive hardship in the Principality where he was unable to start his home race due to a drive shaft failure and then finished P4 in Azerbaijan.

But Leclerc believes the Scuderia will be hard pressed in France to emulate the qualifying speed it showed in the last two rounds, although he also warned of a falloff in performance in Baku before claiming pole.

"I think it’ll be a bit back to reality," said Leclerc. "That’s been two weekends: in Monaco we did not expect to be that competitive, in Baku we definitely did not expect it, and we expected to be back to reality in Baku.

"But actually, I think this weekend is unfortunately going to be the weekend where we will be back to reality and where we’ll be struggling a bit more, compared to the last two weekends."


Ferrari currently sits third in the Constructors' standings, just two points ahead of McLaren. Although Leclerc anticipates a performance drop, he remains hopeful that the Scuderia will be able to hold its own in the championship this weekend.

"Well, I really hope that it won’t be outside the points," he said. "But no, I feel like we are going to probably be the fourth, third team fighting with McLaren, AlphaTauri, always these same teams we are fighting with, but with a bit more gap to the top teams, which are Mercedes and Red Bull."

Carlos Sainz echoed his teammate comments regarding Ferrari's position in the pecking order.

But the Spaniard says he'll be more focused on himself than on his team's outright performance this weekend as he's still getting to grips with his car and his ability to put together a consistent weekend.

"I think it’s going to be back to where we are expecting to be pretty much every weekend – a bit like Barcelona in a way, where we know we were competitive but not at a level of the last few races – so let’s see," he said.

"I’m looking forward to it; I’m more focused on myself rather than car performance right now to be honest, because I think there’s a lot more to get from myself to putting a weekend together.

"I’m not focusing too much on the others."

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