Leclerc told Ferrari before race to risk a one-stop strategy

2020 70th Anniversary Grand Prix

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Charles Leclerc said he insisted on the one-stop strategy which help him finish fourth in the 70th Anniversary Grand Prix.

Before the race many drivers predicted a one-stop strategy would be impossible due to the high levels of tyre degradation. Leclerc was one of only three drivers to achieve it, along with Esteban Ocon and Kimi Raikkonen.

Leclerc rose from eighth on the grid to finish fourth thanks to his strategy. He admitted after the race he was surprised how strong his car’s pace was.

“I’m impressed by the pace, to be honest,” said Leclerc. “I just don’t understand where did we find that pace.

“It’s a good surprise. This morning I would have signed straight away if you would have told me that I would finish eighth. I’m very happy.”

He revealed the team were concerned that attempting a one-stop strategy would put them at risk of the kind of failures seen in last weekend’s race.

“I insisted quite a lot this morning with the team to try and make this one-stop strategy work,” he said. “I think the team must be scared which is obviously understandable considering what happened last week. But I was pretty confident I could make that work.

“I pushed again on radio during the race ‘Plan C’, ‘Plan C’ to try and do this one-stop strategy that we managed to make it work and finish fourth. So I’m extremely happy about today.”

Leclerc said managing his tyres has previously been a weakness of his which he is trying to improve.

“Sometimes the driver has feelings in the car that in data you don’t really see and I just had that feeling that I could make this work and I made my point,” he said.

“But I’m especially happy because all last year I knew that my weakest point was tyre management in the race. I worked very hard for that and to see the results on track this year with the tyre management and my race pace in general, I’m very, very satisfied with this.”

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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...
Keith Collantine
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12 comments on “Leclerc told Ferrari before race to risk a one-stop strategy”

  1. That certainly paid off for Charles. It got him passed Albon & Gasly, who lost time in traffic, Ricciardo and both RPs, plus it got him fresher tyres to attack and overtake Norris.

    Had he not lost two positions on the opening lap, which resulted in him getting stuck in Norris’ dirty air for most of his first stint, he might have had a chance against Bottas for 3rd.

    Nevertheless it was an excellent drive by Charles. Hopefully, Ferrari can give him a car to challenge the front runners more often.

    1. Leclerc did a Raikkonen ..but back then Kimi won the races.

      1. Ah the days of 2005 when no one could touch Kimi.
        He was on a one stopper again yesterday which got him past a gaggle of 5 cars including the hapless GIO.

  2. Once again, Charles’ big run. It does not waste anything that the race provides and reveals a capacity for learning and constant improvement, characteristic of great champions. I have no doubt, when we get a more competitive car available, it will lead and reach glory. Congratulations.

  3. This is why he’s on a long term contract
    This is the guy I can get behind to take us back to the front

    1. It will just be the same with alonso and vettel.

    2. No driver’s gonna win anything with Ferrari until their ancient and corrupt structure of management changes. They have issues with wind tunnel data for more than a decade now yet you won’t hear a thing about the change of approach and significant investment – mark my words, even McLaren is going to contend for the wins and titles sooner than this Ferrari. Everyone is too afraid to take a responsibility for a large-scale revolution which would modernize the team and the F1 team’s management is now so obedient to the higher hierarchy that you can’t expect a significant shift in fortunes. Ferrari was historically strong only when the F1 team was kind of autonomous and strong politically – until they remain the exact opposite and no one will move their finger to restructure the team, they will remain perennial underachievers.

      1. @pironitheprovocateur That’s why the team is restructuring behind the scenes
        From Mr. Binotto’s words it seems this will revolutionize how the team is run
        I don’t mind McLaren contesting for wins and championships sooner than us,Mr. Elkann said it will be a long time before we get back to the front
        I have time and patience, the next few years will be rough, but it will be all worth it when a Red car is consistently crossing the white line with a waving chequered flag. That feeling is worth the long wait.

  4. With Leclec getting results like that, what goes on Vettel’s mind is obvious: Leclec is being given the manager’s special, while he’s being served the soup of the day.
    And he keeps on spilling that soup…

    1. Ferrari is a one man woman. She can’t do two-timing…

  5. F1 needs to ditch two compound rules. And average consumption rule.

  6. I felt one stop was the obvious strat. For a sec i was going to apologise to ferraris strategists, to inaki rueda, I guess it was all leclerc

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