Charles Leclerc, Ferrari, Red Bull Ring, 2020

Leclerc pins hopes on “aggressive” dry weather set-up

2020 F1 season

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Charles Leclerc says he ran an “aggressive” dry weather set-up on his Ferrari yesterday to maximise his chances in today’s Austrian Grand Prix.

Heavy rain fell throughout Saturday at the Red Bull Ring, but dry weather is forecast for today’s Styrian Grand Prix.

Leclerc was eliminated during Q2 in Saturday’s qualifying session. He originally qualified 11th, but was relegated to 14th when he received a three-place grid penalty for impeding Daniil Kvyat during the session.

“It was a tricky one,” said Leclerc after qualifying yesterday. “But the result is that were just not quick enough today. I have tried to push but it was not enough.

“I went quite aggressive with the set-up, which I think had its benefits on the dry, but it might be that we went a bit too far for the wet conditions. But the race should be in the dry so hopefully we can take the benefits of our aggressive position in the set-up.”

Ferrari brought an upgrade to this weekend’s race in response to their disappointing performance at the same track one week ago. However the wet qualifying session gave few signs of significant progress, and one car was eliminated from Q2 for the second weekend in a row.

“I don’t think the balance was a big issue towards the end,” said Leclerc. “We were just not quick enough.

“When I see the gap I’m quite surprised. So there’s a there’s some work to do.

“The driving definitely could have been better. But yeah, we have some work to do. I think we’re one-second point eight off. There is not this in the balance [of the car].”

Having been consistently bottom of the speed trap during the two weekends so far, Leclerc fears overtaking could prove difficult in the race.

“It’s very difficult to overtake,” he said. “So it’s going to be tricky. But I will give it all.”

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Dieter Rencken
Dieter Rencken has held full FIA Formula 1 media accreditation since 2000, during which period he has reported from over 300 grands prix, plus...
Josh Holland
USA-based Josh joined the RaceFans team in 2018. Josh helps produce our Formula 1 race weekend coverage, assists with our social media activities and...

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10 comments on “Leclerc pins hopes on “aggressive” dry weather set-up”

  1. Aggressive race setup means low downforce setup I guess. Yet he thinks it will be difficult to overtake because of less top speed?

    Is that a Ferrari or a Fiat engine at the back of the red car? Hope he takes it cautious in the first few laps. Leave points, they need the running to understand the updates.

    1. Remember last years Monaco GP?

      1. The opportunities are less there. Austria is a track with more places to overtake. Their race pace was good even before these setup changes. Hope he remembers that Monaco race as well.

  2. For the biggest part of the year (except for the last few races) the set up of the engine was kind of ‘aggressive’.
    Hope for Ferrari they can keep it legal or hidden this time as well. 😉

  3. “When I see the gap I’m quite surprised.

    well that’s what happens if you have to stop cheating i guess.

    1. Are you suggesting Mercedes is still cheating?

  4. He’s going to have to overtake Vettel. That would be my main concern.

    After that it is just a matter of waiting for the SC to erase some of the gap to the front.

  5. Taking off too much wing will be an issue as although he’ll be quick on the straights it will hurt his overall laptime. So he won’t be able to catch cars ahead to try to overtake them. He needs to hope that the field stays bunched up for quite a while. Might hurt his tyres too.

    1. Leclerc did take off too much wing, just not his own.

  6. Well that was pretty hopeless…

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