Leclerc muzzled amid ‘off’ weekend for Ferrari

Mon, 10 June 2024, 09:46

Jun.10 (GMM) Ferrari tried – unsuccessfully – to keep Charles Leclerc quiet amid an abysmal weekend for the Maranello based team in Canada.

Fresh from his Monaco win from pole, Leclerc and Ferrari headed into the Montreal event being labelled by the likes of Lando Norris (McLaren) and Dr Helmut Marko (Red Bull) as a race favourite.

Actually, the red cars were mysteriously off the pace all weekend, while Leclerc retired with an engine problem and Carlos Sainz also did not finish.

It’s a massive thump to Leclerc, whose points deficit to Max Verstappen in the drivers’ world championship now almost doubles to a whopping 56 points.

“They obviously had a bit of an off weekend,” remarked Mercedes’ George Russell.

Amid that off weekend, a Ferrari press officer quietly showed Leclerc a message on her mobile phone just prior to a media interview, perhaps in an attempt to keep any criticism of the team to a minimum.

“I’ll say what I want,” the clearly furious Leclerc whispered back.

He then told the French broadcaster Canal Plus that Sunday’s race had been “Hell from start to finish”.

“We had a problem with the engine in the first laps, losing 1 or 2 seconds on the straights. We lost 20-25kph in a straight line.

“We reset the car and it worked a little better but then the torque was very inconsistent – it was impossible to drive.”

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