Charles Leclerc acknowledges that he doesn’t deserve to win the 2022 Formula 1 Drivers’ title if he continues to make on-track mistakes.
Leclerc crashed out of the French Grand Prix on Sunday from the lead of the race, marking his third retirement in the last seven races.
The Monegasque driver started the grand prix from pole position and was in control throughout the opening stages as he fended off pressure from Max Verstappen.
However, on lap 18 of the race, the Ferrari driver slid off the circuit at Turn 11 after running wide, which pitched him into the barriers.
When asked after his retirement what went wrong, Leclerc answered: “I lost the rear. That’s it.
“I don’t know [if something was wrong], technically we need to check. I don’t think there is, I think it’s just a mistake. I tried to take too much [speed] around the outside where it was probably dirty.”
Leclerc entered the race weekend with a 38 point deficit to Verstappen, who is hunting back-to-back World Championship success.
However, that gap has now grown to 63 points after the Dutchman took another race victory at the Le Castellet.
Leclerc says that he doesn’t deserve to claim the title at the end of the season if he carries on making mistakes.
“It’s my fault and if I keep doing mistakes like this then I deserve to not win the championship,” he said.
“The level is high this year, I’m performing at a high level but if I’m doing those mistakes then it’s pointless to be at a high level.”
Leclerc’s previous two retirements this year in Spain and Azerbaijan respectively both also came while he was leading the race, albeit on those occasions, he suffered reliability issues.