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Italian GP | Leclerc: only thing I got in my head is winning

Charles Leclerc won an incredible race in Monza, nine years after Fernando Alonso's victory in 2010.

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Italian GP | Leclerc: only thing I got in my head is winning
Fuente imagen: Jerry Andre - Motorlat Images

Ferrari's Charles Leclerc made it two in a row for the Maranello-based squad, with a back-to-win success between Spa and Monza. The Italian Grand Prix was set to be another good track for the SF90 and the Monegasque didn't fail to maximize the car performance in front of the Tifosi. In the drivers' press conference just after the podium, Leclerc spoke about his thoughts during the race: "It’s quite difficult, a lot going through my mind, during the race, after the race. A lot of emotions, obviously it was very very difficult during the race: Lewis was behind me, I think the better gap was maybe 1.7 second. I know that Lewis rarely do mistakes, so I had to stay on it. I did a few mistake, which never cost me a position, once was very very close."


"It was crazy, finally in the last two laps I started to believe that the win was possible, tyres felt quite okay. I think with the traffic Valtteri dropped a little bit, and that helped me to get a little bit of space. And then finally go on the line was just… I let go all my emotions through the radio, it felt absolutely amazing, the podium also. It’s going beyond all the dreams I’ve had since child. To see so many people cheering for one team, singing all together, it’s amazing", he added.

Mercedes was able to fight with two cars but Leclerc managed to keep them both behind, with a superb drive and also thanks to a great call for the Ferrari's pit wall: "I think the strategy was good, obviously we were in a tricky situation because we had the two Mercedes behind and I was the only Ferrari so they could play the game of going long with one car and earlier with the other. So it was very tricky but in the end I think we made the right choice with the hard."

The choice of going one stop with Pirelli hard tyres was certainly one of the key facts during today's race, as the Monegasque kept Hamilton and Bottas behind despite of the degradation: "The hard tyres were quite difficult to manage, from the beginning, apart from the first three-four laps I felt quite good, then there was like a drop of grip from all 4 tyres, and then I was struggling and started to lose the rear, and there is where performance started to slow down a little bit. They were not in a very bad shape, I believe they could have stayed where they were for quite many laps. But I was just struggling with the rear left especially."

There was also some controversy in today's race, due to Leclerc pushing Hamilton on the side of the track in the second chicane. Leclerc seems to know what to do during tough battles, after what he experienced in Spielberg against Verstappen: "Obviously I think since Austria it’s clear that we can go a bit further in the way we defend and overtake, in terms of aggressivity as drivers. I believe that Austria helped me to change this approach, today it’s also thanks to this that I managed to win. It was obviously very on the limit, but I’m happy to race like this." He then added about the black and white flag: "I haven’t seen the images yet. It’s good if we can race harder, I don’t know yet particularly for this case."

Leclerc also spoke about his teammate who had a really difficult weekend and wasn't able to help him against the two Mercedes: "Obviously it’s always an easier situation to have two cars instead of one. Yesterday Seb was extremely unlucky, he couldn’t do his second lap in Q3, will be better in next races". The two Ferrari drivers are actually in a fight for the position in the standings: "I don’t know if I will keep the position in drivers’ championship from Seb. I want to beat him, he wants to beat me. From here to the end of the championship, I don’t know. Seb is the most complete driver I’ve ever been with. He’s a complete driver, I learn a lot from him, he’s very methodical."


After his second career win in Formula 1, he spoke about his feeling in the days between Spa and Monza: "I think is the first weekend in my life where the only thing I got in my head is winning. Normally I focus on the job I have to do in the car, which normally is more successful and works better. Since Wednesday, seen the support we had, was just incredible. The only thing I wanted this weekend was win in front of all the guys that are supporting us for the team. It was very difficult because also during the race I was thinking to that win and how much it would mean to everyone in the grandstand here. So I was having a bit of pressure, that’s what I had from lap 1 to last lap. I’ve never been on a podium with so many people underneath it. To see that the whole straight was full of people, mostly red, 99% red. It was great to see: hearing them cheering, singing, was just a lot of emotions."

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