However, Leclerc concedes that he was pondering giving up his only Q3 attempt due to the struggles he was experiencing with grip even before the rain appeared.
“To be honest today, in my whole career I’ve never experienced something like that,” Leclerc said.
“From Turn 4, it was not raining, but the car was extremely difficult to drive, no grip, I was think about just coming in at the end of the lap, but I finished the lap and P2, it’s quite good but it’s a very weird one for everybody on track today, but I’m happy to be on the front row, anyway.”
Leclerc credited his side of the Ferrari garage for executing the right calls in the changeable conditions, enabling him to secure a front-row berth for Sunday’s race.
“It’s always very, very difficult, but today we did, obviously, the right choices, we did everything we wanted to do, so that’s good,” he added.
The Monegasque driver had been on pole at the previous two rounds but Ferrari’s continued race-day woes saw him drop back into the clutches of faster cars behind.
But Leclerc has been coy about the Italian marque’s chances in Sunday’s 71-lap grand prix, insisting that the race pace is always an unknown when the Sprint format is in use.
Asked whether he is confident for the grand prix, Leclerc replied: “I don’t know about the race yet. In these Sprint weekends there’s always a big question mark on the race pace, but I hope it will be a good one and, hopefully, there won’t be too much rain tomorrow and Sunday.”