Charles Leclerc pleased that changed approach paid off
Charles Leclerc says he was left satisfied that a change of approach yielded another podium finish at Formula 1’s French Grand Prix.
Leclerc commented in Canada that he had identified Q3 as a weakness, having been competitive through the early stages of the session before slipping out of contention.
In France Leclerc qualified as the lead Ferrari driver – as Sebastian Vettel struggled – and finished in third place, recording his second podium on the bounce.
“I am very happy because I have a few difficult weekends over the last ones especially in qualifying,” he said.
“I have changed the approach for here and I also changed my approach a little bit on the car setup and went in the right direction so for that I am very happy that it paid off and we have seen it on the results this weekend.
“We have brought some new parts for the car this weekend and some worked and some others have not but clearly Mercedes are quite better for now so we need to work and catch up.”
Leclerc trailed Valtteri Bottas by seven seconds with 10 laps remaining but finished just a second behind, as the Finn focused on saving tyres, while contending with a misfire.
“The car felt very good as I paid a lot of attention to both sets of tyres before and I was focusing for the end of the race to have the tyres in a good shape and on that I think we did quite a good job,” said Leclerc.
“To be honest I didn’t expect to catch Valtteri; I caught quite dramatically towards the end which was a good surprise.
“When I saw that I pushed even more and in the end we finished and I tried to show myself on the inside of the last corner but I was too far back to try something.”