Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc believes he has “grown quite a lot” amid the difficulties that have plagued Ferrari’s Formula 1 season.
Leclerc has scored two podiums so far this year but Ferrari’s pace has dramatically declined compared to 2019 in the wake of the private settlement it reached with the FIA.
The Italian squad currently sits sixth in the Constructors’ Championship and is on course for its worst result in 40 years.
It has repeatedly stressed that there is no quick fix to its issues and is braced for another difficult campaign in 2021 due to stable regulations.
In his maiden year with Ferrari in 2019 Leclerc scored two grand prix wins and scored seven pole positions.
However Leclerc feels that Ferrari’s woes have nonetheless still enabled him to improve as a driver.
“It’s definitely a quite different picture compared to last year,” Leclerc said.
“We have been struggling as a team quite a lot more but surely we always learn more once you are going through tough times.
“It is up to us to keep our heads up and stay motivated, which is the most difficult at the moment. I have to be honest also driving for Ferrari is a motivation in itself, I’m not struggling with that, I’m hugely motivated to do well, to turn the situation around.
“I have a long-term partnership to the team and I’m really looking forward to try and turn it around.
“It’s not the easiest at the moment but we are working hard to get back to the top but surely I think I’ve grown quite a lot this season.”
Late last year, Leclerc signed a long-term contract that will see him remain at the team until at least the 2024 season.
Next year, he will have a new team-mate in Carlos Sainz, who joins as a replacement for Aston Martin-bound Sebastian Vettel.