It looks like Charles Leclerc is going through a phase of disappointment after a brilliant start to the year. The Ferrari driver was leading the drivers\’ championship early in the season after wins in Bahrain and Australia. However, a couple of retirements in Barcelona and Baku, followed by a 10-place grid penalty, have left Leclerc 49 points behind the championship leader Max Verstappen. The lapse in Leclerc\’s campaign allowed Verstappen and Sergio Perez to secure the first two places in the drivers\’ championship.
Red Bull also took over Ferrari in the constructors\’ championship as a result of their reliability concerns. However, Charles Leclerc recently revealed that he is quite motivated and feels that he still has a good chance of winning this year\’s F1 championship. The 24-year-old suffered the second retirement of the season in Baku due to a power unit failure. Heading into the Canadian GP, Leclerc opted for an extra power unit, costing him a 10-grid place penalty.
As a result, Leclerc started P19 on the grid alongside Yuki Tsunoda in Montreal and could only manage to finish P5. Leclerc is third in the drivers\’ championship with 126 points, two wins, and four podiums. Thus, with only nine races so far in the 22-race 2022 calendar, Leclerc is optimistic that he can make a comeback to get back on top and fight with Verstappen for his first championship title in F1.
Leclerc Has Not Given Up Yet
Charles said that Ferrari would start again in Silverstone and look forward to win their third race of the season. The Monegasque shared that the championship is quite long, and the 49 points gap could easily be covered with two race wins. Leclerc pointed out that the Scuderia\’s main focus is to concentrate on themselves. He added, \”I\’m not worried. I\’m just extremely motivated to finally have a clean weekend and show that we are here and that we are strong.\”
The Ferrari driver also pointed out that reliability could be a major factor this season. Many teams are struggling to finish consistently with their newly designed cars. Perez and Verstappen suffered an early double retirement in Bahrain, which allowed Ferrari to get ahead. However, Red Bull managed to cover the gap when Ferrari encountered reliability issues.
Moreover, Perez and Red Bull struggled again in Montreal, where the Mexican was forced to retire following a gearbox malfunction. Other teams have also faced some retirements at the middle and back of the field. Therefore, reliability could play out as a major factor. The reliability problem could also allow Mercedes to get back to the front and have a three-way championship battle.