Charles Leclerc, Ferrari, Bahrain International Circuit, 2019

Leclerc: Bahrain GP loss not as cruel as Monaco 2017

2019 Bahrain Grand Prix

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Charles Leclerc says losing what would have been his first Formula 1 race victory was not as cruel as missing out on a home F2 win two years ago.

Yesterday Leclerc came within 10 laps of scoring his first F1 victory when a power unit problem slowed his car and allowed Lewis Hamilton to pass him. However when asked if that had been the cruellest race of his career, Leclerc said: “I will not go to that extreme because I think Formula Two in Monaco was probably the worst I’ve ever had.”

Leclerc took pole position for his home event in 2017 and led much of the race. However a Safety Car period allowed three of his rivals to jump ahead. Leclerc then suffered a suspension upright failure which put him out and consigned him to a 17th-place start for the following day’s race.

The Ferrari driver said he thought his engine was going to fail completely when his problem first developed during yesterday’s race.

“To be honest, how I felt in the car, I really thought everything would blow up a few laps later,” he said. “Happily it has not been the case and we still finished third.

“[It was] just a loss of power, completely, very sudden. It got a tiny bit better after but the problem stayed there. And there were no signs before it to feel that anything was going wrong.”

Despite his disappointment, Leclerc said there were still positives to take away from the weekend.

“It’s still a podium and it’s my first podium in Formula 1 so in a way I feel I should enjoy it. I felt like there was a lot more to take this weekend. It’s not the ideal race we wanted but we shall be happy about our third place despite problems.”

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2019 F1 season

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Charles Leclerc, Formula 2, Prema, Monaco, 2017
Leclerc was on course to win his home Formula 2 race in Monaco before misfortune struck

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Keith Collantine
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  • 5 comments on “Leclerc: Bahrain GP loss not as cruel as Monaco 2017”

    1. Steve W (@westcoastboogaloo)
      1st April 2019, 13:59

      Classy guy, I’m looking forward to his years in the sport.

    2. I’d forgotten what it was like seeing a racing car with a big number 1 on the front… such a shame that this privilege hasn’t been taken up in recent years.

      1. @casanova Totally agree.
        And to be honest, I dislike completely that driver number era. So boring, lots of double digits to supposedly make an impact. Well, nothing impacts more than bearing the #1.
        Plus, the real stars of F1 are the cars, therefore it should be them bearing it’s own numbers, just like before.

        1. The reason for double digits is that there are only 9 single digits and only 8 available. So with 20 cars there is little choice.
          And only the drivers deserve star status, cars are a bunch of well designed parts.

          1. I expressed myself badly. I referred to the double numbers, like # 33, # 44, # 55, # 77, # 88, # 99… a bore fest.
            Well, I don’t agree. Drivers are stars at kart, maybe Indy. F1 has it’s machinery at first and only then, the drivers.

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