Leclerc sixth at Monaco: “We just don’t have the pace to challenge for more yet”

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Photo credit: Scuderia Ferrari

Charles Leclerc salvaged sixth place after a difficult Monaco Grand Prix weekend that saw him penalised from third to sixth on the grid for impeding Lando Norris in qualifying, and unable to take advantage of the late rain–or the penalty assessed to George Russell ahead of him–as he finished sixth.

When the rain came, initially Leclerc opted to stay out, taking the chance that either the rain would be brief, or someone else would bring out a safety car on dry tires.

“Whenever there’s the rain coming like this, there were quite a few cars still on slick tyres. So the chances of a safety car are really, really high. And I didn’t want to be the first one to bail because, again, I just wanted to wait for a safety car that didn’t arrive.”

It very nearly did when his teammate, Carlos Sainz, spun off; he rejoined right behind Leclerc, and Ferrari stacked their pit stops to get both cars on intermediates. Ultimately, the best he was able to do was hold position and keep the car in one piece.

“I gave absolutely everything. I think yesterday there wasn’t much more in quali. Neither there was today. Unfortunately, we just don’t have the pace to challenge for more yet.”

The weekend was another unfortunate homecoming for Leclerc, whose best race at Monaco was falling from pole to fourth last year, and was seemingly fortunate to simply stay in sixth. With another race next weekend in Spain, he will not have any time to dwell.

“As a driver, I need to do a good job to reset and come back every year thinking that it can be the good year. I did this year.”