Former FIA president Jean Todt says that Charles Leclerc is a “great champion” – however he says that the Ferrari driver “lacks something”.
In the early stages of the 2022 season, Leclerc appeared to be in title contention after winning two of the opening three races.
However since then, he has only taken one further victory, with Red Bull’s Max Verstappen now boasting a massive 116-point lead in the standings.
Reliability has been a concern for Ferrari at some races this year, however Leclerc has been guilty of making errors – most notably in France, when a mistake saw him retire from the lead of the grand prix.
Ferrari has also carried out a number of questionable strategies during the year, and is now looking to protect second place in the Constructors’ standings ahead of Mercedes.
Speaking to Gazzetta dello Sport, Todt said of Leclerc: “Charles is already a great champion. He still lacks something, I hope he has it soon.”
Prior to his reign at the helm of the FIA, Todt was a prominent senior figure within the Ferrari F1 organisation.
The Frenchman has called on his former team to learn from the mistakes that have plagued its 2022 campaign.
“Ferrari at one point had the best car in the championship,” he said. “Then they missed certain opportunities – I’m thinking of strategy, a Safety Car that came in at the wrong time, reliability problems.
“Different episodes had a cost. We have to reflect on this to avoid them happening again.
“Never leave anything to chance. And if you manage to leave nothing taken for granted, all the ingredients are there to be champions.”
Ferrari’s championship drought stretches back to the 2008 season, when it last topped the Constructors’ standings.
Kimi Raikkonen remains its last Drivers’ Champion, after he prevailed in the 2007 season during his maiden year with the Scuderia outfit.