Charles Leclerc says he “never learned so much” from a team-mate in the wake of confirmation that Sebastian Vettel will leave Ferrari at the end of 2020.
Long-term Ferrari junior Leclerc was promoted to the team for 2019 in place of Kimi Raikkonen, linking up with four-time champion Vettel.
Leclerc finished ahead of Vettel in the standings, taking two wins to his team-mate’s one, while the pair also endured a couple of on-track clashes, most notably in Brazil.
Leclerc extended his contract with Ferrari through 2024 last December but on Tuesday it was confirmed that Vettel will leave at the end of the 2020 season.
“It’s been a huge honour for me to be your team-mate,” Leclerc wrote on social media.
“We’ve had some tense moments on tracks. Some very good ones and some others that didn’t end as we both wanted, but there was always respect, even though it wasn’t perceived this way from the outside.
“I’ve never learnt so much as I did with you as my team-mate.”
Ferrari has yet to identify a replacement for the departing Vettel.