Alas, the moment Ferrari fans have been waiting for. The start of Monza Grand Prix. A year ago this grandprix, Charles Leclerc was able to bring the Ferrari to the front of the grid setting laptimes of 1:20.126 in Q1, 1:19.553 in Q2 (just a bit behind Lewis Hamilton), and finally redeemed it in Q3 securing pole position with a time of 1:19.307. Which the following day, race day, ended with Leclerc claiming his second consecutive race win and Ferrari's first win in Italy since 2010 with Fernando Alonso.
A year later, this qualifying session for Scuderia Ferrari is one that the team will never forget. Sebastian Vettel was unable to bring himself out of Q1 due to traffic in which he ended up in 17th while Charles Leclerc was able to bring himself to Q2 but stuck there as he was only able to bring his car to 13th.
When Leclerc was asked about his expectation as well as the teams, he responded with, "coming into the weekend we expected it to be like this. We knew that Spa and here are probably the two worst tracks for us but this is our situation at the moment. It's tough, because once you do a good lap and you end up P13 it doesn't feel good. But for now I need to try and extract the maximum out of the car in the situation we are in. Of course, it hurts even more as this is our home race, but it's the reality for us at present, unfortunately. We need to work and hopefully Mugello, which is still home soil for Ferrari, will be a bit better than here. Last weekend and here, we have been trying many things on the car, but we are not finding a solution. So we need to keep our head down, stay motivated, and I'm sure better days will come"
When Vettel was asked about his thoughts on his performance, he responded with, "there's not much to say about this session. There were a lot of cars in front of me when I started second quick lap. In that moment I knew it wouldn’t be possible to improve my time. I don't know why the other drivers started to overtake on the warm up lap. I found myself in the middle of the mess and didn't get a lap. Everybody should stay in the position they are in the line, then everybody opens a gap and it should be fine to set a time. From our side, probably we didn’t pick the right time to get back on track and some others managed to do better than us, as they improved. Of course starting from so far back on the grid means it will not be an easy race, but you never know what can happen and we will see what we can do."
With a statement like that from both Leclerc and Vettel, it seems as though the drivers are pushing to the best of their abilities but the cars as well as timing, and traffic jam are just not on their side. Tomorrow is race day and hopefully the luck is on their side for the team and Ferrari fans.