Ferrari "will not gamble" on Leclerc’s gearbox despite pole

Ferrari "will not gamble" on Charles Leclerc's gearbox despite his shock Formula 1 pole in Monaco as it waits to find out the extent of the damage to his car.

Listen to this article

Leclerc managed to convert Ferrari’s impressive practice pace into a first pole of the season in Monaco on Saturday, edging out Red Bull’s Max Verstappen by two-tenths of a second.

But the pole was secured in unusual fashion after Leclerc crashed at the exit of Swimming Pool late in Q3, bringing out a red flag that prevented any drivers for making further improvements.

Although Leclerc was pleased to have secured pole, both he and the Ferrari team were left sweating on the condition of his car and gearbox, fearing it could trigger a grid penalty.

Ferrari F1 boss Mattia Binotto made clear the team would not take any risks with Leclerc’s gearbox, stressing the importance of maximising its points haul in Monaco.

“No, we will not gamble,” Binotto said following qualifying in Monaco. “I think for us what's important after such a qualy is to try to maximise the number of points for the championship, and obviously to maximise we need to finish the race.

“So reliability is key, reliability remains the priority. If we have any doubts, we will certainly change and fix it.”

Read Also:

Should Leclerc’s car require a new gearbox, it would result in a five-place grid drop that would relegate him to sixth place on the grid.

Binotto thought that Ferrari would have clarity on the condition of the gearbox and the chassis “within a couple of hours”, with a decision on any changes set to be taken tonight.

The result marked Ferrari’s first pole since the 2019 Mexican Grand Prix - scored by Leclerc - and came after a surprising upswing in form through the Monaco weekend so far.

But Binotto said after the session that there was a feeling of disappointment in the team due to Leclerc’s crash and the fact that Carlos Sainz only qualified fourth, having placed second in all three practice sessions.

“It's always a shame crashing a car,” Binotto said. “[We are] disappointed as well, the entire team was more disappointed not for the crash, certainly not for the pole, because we believe that Carlos could have done better overall and we felt that could have been the case.

“So as team, we could have done even maybe better today and so we feel a bit disappointed with that.”

shares
comments

Related video

Ricciardo refuses to believe he's one second slower than Norris
Previous article

Ricciardo refuses to believe he's one second slower than Norris

Next article

Mercedes 'didn’t provide Hamilton the right car' for qualifying

Mercedes 'didn’t provide Hamilton the right car' for qualifying
Load comments
The six subplots to watch in 2022 as a new F1 era begins Prime

The six subplots to watch in 2022 as a new F1 era begins

As Formula 1 prepares to begin a new era of technical regulations in 2022, We pick out six other key elements to follow this season

Why newly-retired Kimi Raikkonen won't miss F1 Prime

Why newly-retired Kimi Raikkonen won't miss F1

After 349 grand prix starts, 46 fastest laps, 21 wins and one world championship, Kimi Raikkonen has finally called time on his F1 career. In an exclusive interview with Motorsport.com on the eve of his final race, he explains his loathing of paddock politics and reflects on how motorsport has changed over the past two decades.

Formula 1
Jan 23, 2022
Unpacking the technical changes behind F1 2022's rules shake-up Prime

Unpacking the technical changes behind F1 2022's rules shake-up

Formula 1 cars will look very different this year as the long-awaited fresh rules finally arrive with the stated aim of improving its quality of racing. We break down what the return of 'ground effect' aerodynamics - and a flurry of other changes besides - means for the teams, and what fans can expect

Formula 1
Jan 21, 2022
Why F1's new era is still dogged by its old world problems Prime

Why F1's new era is still dogged by its old world problems

OPINION: The 2022 Formula 1 season is just weeks away from getting underway, but instead of focusing on what is to come, the attention still remains on what has been – not least the Abu Dhabi title decider controversy. That, plus other key talking points, must be resolved to allow the series to warmly welcome in its new era

Formula 1
Jan 20, 2022
The Schumacher trait that will give Haas hope in F1 2022 Prime

The Schumacher trait that will give Haas hope in F1 2022

Mick Schumacher’s knack of improving during his second season in a championship was a trademark of his junior formula career, so his progress during his rookie Formula 1 campaign with Haas was encouraging. His target now will be to turn that improvement into results as the team hopes to reap the rewards of sacrificing development in 2021

Formula 1
Jan 19, 2022
The “glorified taxi” driver central to F1’s continued safety push Prime

The “glorified taxi” driver central to F1’s continued safety push

As the driver of Formula 1’s medical car, Alan van der Merwe’s job is to wait – and hope his skills aren’t needed. James Newbold hears from F1’s lesser-known stalwart.

Formula 1
Jan 15, 2022
When BMW added F1 'rocket fuel' to ignite Brabham's 1983 title push Prime

When BMW added F1 'rocket fuel' to ignite Brabham's 1983 title push

There was an ace up the sleeve during the 1983 F1 title-winning season of Nelson Piquet and Brabham. It made a frontrunning car invincible for the last three races to see off Renault's Alain Prost and secure the combination's second world title in three years

Formula 1
Jan 13, 2022
How “abysmal” reliability blunted Brabham’s first winner Prime

How “abysmal” reliability blunted Brabham’s first winner

Brabham’s first world championship race-winning car was held back by unreliable Climax engines – or so its creators believed, as STUART CODLING explains

Formula 1
Jan 10, 2022