Charles Leclerc, Ferrari, Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, 2022

Leclerc frustrated by “DRS trains” and slow pit stop in climb from back row to fifth

2022 Canadian Grand Prix

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Charles Leclerc said his efforts to make progress in the Canadian Grand Prix were frustrated by a series of “DRS trains” and a slow pit stop.

He started the race on the back row of the grid after collecting a series of penalties for power unit parts changes. He finished in fifth, having predicted fourth was the best he could expect heading into the race.

Having spent many laps stuck behind other drivers, a slow tyre change cost him an opportunity to run in clear air. “Unfortunately with the pit stop this put us a bit in a bad situation because we had cleared the DRS train and we got another DRS train after the slow pit stop,” he explained.

“I had to push on the tyres and that cost me a little bit at the end. But overall it was just a race where I had to be patient.

“At the beginning I was stuck behind a DRS train. In the middle part of the race I was stuck behind Esteban [Ocon], who had much newer tyres and was very good out of turn 10 so that was enough for him to keep me behind. Then when I had free air I think the pace was really good but it’s like this,” Leclerc concluded.

Despite the slow pit stop, Leclerc was satisfied with Ferrari’s strategy. “I don’t think there was any other good situation, good solution to get free air today,” he said. “But again with the pit stop, I think this cost us a bit of free air.”

George Russell said he was surprised Leclerc wasn’t able to attack him and team mate Lewis Hamilton at the end of the race. Thanks to the reliability of his Mercedes, Russell is now just 15 points behind Leclerc in the championship.

However, Leclerc is unconcerned by Mercedes’ relatively strong showing in Montreal. “I think it’s good if they joined the fight, I’m not worried,” he said. “I’m confident that our car is strong if we get on top of reliability, today was good.

“But as I’ve seen also, it’s a problem for everyone, reliability. So we just need to focus on ourselves, performance is strong and I’m sure that whenever we’ll finish races, we’ll be there to fight for wins.”

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Hazel Southwell
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Will Wood
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11 comments on “Leclerc frustrated by “DRS trains” and slow pit stop in climb from back row to fifth”

  1. I actually have to say Leclerc must have done an amazing job. We didn’t get to see him very much at all racing on Sunday (on the tele) except for that horrible pitstop. That pitstop was exactly the opposite thing to want to have happened when trying to come from behind, every second counts and track position entry. Getting 5th overall after that, in that race has to be commended.

    1. I don’t understand the kind of setup Ferrari put on Leclerc’s car for this Sunday. I thought he had the privilege of a race focused setup for Sunday as he didn’t participate much in quali, yet he struggled on the straights and in traction zones (which has been a strong area for Ferrari) throughout the race.

      Seems like another Ferrari f-up to me.

      1. @todfod It was mentioned on Sky that they had gone with a lower drag setup to give him more top speed to help overtaking on the straight.

        I don’t think the poor traction coming off the corners was specific to Charles setup as Carlos seemed to be suffering from the same thing which was hurting him having a better run at Max at the end.

        1. Lower drag and higher top speeds didn’t help him much did it.

          DRS trains this year are just awful. The only time we see any decent racing is the first laps before they enable the bloody DRS.

  2. Bit unlucky with the second VSC as it fell right in the pitstop window of the medium runners and then got stuck behind Ocon, which by then his old hards did not give him the traction needed for an overtake. By the end his old medium tyres were used up around the SC stoppers with fresher tyres so this was just a ‘take what you can get’ weekend for him all around.

    Apart from the Imola spin Leclerc is keeping up his end of the deal in competing for the top spots. Ferrari so far hasn’t and unlike the Vettel years blame will fully be placed solely on the team if they fail their stardriver again.

  3. I still don’t get with Ferrari…..I mean they should focus after the past mistakes and yesterday we saw another mistake at the pit and tires for Sainz, hard instead of soft? Really? But ok, am only a fan and not in the paddock but its a pity for Ferrari as both drivers gave all they had yesterday.

    1. I thought that was odd too, the softs fall off after 5 laps, which is crazy that they build tyres to only last that long. anyways, put him on the mediums at least

      1. just read that he didnt have any mediums left

  4. Ian Stephens
    20th June 2022, 17:00

    Perhaps we could stop the DRS trains by not allowing DRS if the driver used it on the previous lap. I am not sure it would work – it might just mean drivers gain a place on one lap and lose it on the next. Perhaps it would need to be something like only 3 laps out of any 5 consecutive laps.

    Another idea might be that you don’t get DRS if the driver in front does.

  5. A really great move to end that DRS train running from Leclerc though. Good to see him think things through how to do it after it just did not work for him chasing with DRS and trying at the classic places.

    1. Indeed, and it seems somehow drs trains are not as impossible to get past as they were before the regulation change.

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