CHARLES LECLERC has thrown away Ferrari’s early season advantage as tensions rise at the Italian marquee.
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Charles Leclerc has opened up on claims Ferrari are imploding, insisting the team are still “very united”. It comes after Leclerc was seen in a heated discussion with Ferrari team principal Mattia Binotto after dropping outside the top three at the British Grand Prix, a race he might have won.
Sky Sports host Ted Kravitz asked what the reality was inside the team after fans spotted Binotto’s finger-wagging last weekend. He also asked why Leclerc’s mechanics reportedly did not want to celebrate with Carlos Sainz after the Spaniard’s win last week.
However, Leclerc appeared to squash rumours of an interior split at Ferrari, suggesting the stories were untrue. The Monegasque explained: “It is a shame to see all of this type of things because it is definitely not what is happening inside the team.
“We are a very united team, we have always been and it’s not these difficult races that will make it change.”
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Charles Leclerc has claimed Ferrari are still united (Image: Sky Sports F1)
“Of course were we disappointed after last weekend? I think we were. We were one-two, we finished one-four, so some part of the team were disappointed. But this was definitely not the reason or whatsoever for everybody not being on the picture.
“I think half of the team that stayed on the picture missed the plane to go back home, it was quite tricky. We wanted to do a first picture but Carlos was not here so we had to delay everything, But, there’s no hard feelings whatsoever.”
Leclerc was then asked whether the team were only supporting him for the championship or whether the pair were still free to fight. Sainz’s win at Silverstone puts the Spaniard just nine points behind his team-mate despite a miserable start to the campaign.
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Mattia Binotto was seen waving his finger at Leclerc after the race at Silverstone (Image: Sky Sports F1)
Leclerc responded by reiterating he still felt he had the backing of the team heading into the second half of the season. He explained: “It’s more Mattia to ask these type of questions.
“I feel the support of the team. Of course in the last few races it hasn’t gone my way for whatever reasons. But yeah I still feel the support of the team.”
When asked if he believed he should be leading the world championship, Leclerc admitted he had not yet given up. He commented: “It is true there is the potential to win this championship this season and I still believe in it as much as I did before. We just need to have [some] races without problems and have just a clean few next race weekends.”