F1 | US GP | Leclerc on a ''very boring'' but ''very good race'' as he finishes P4
For the sixth time in 2021, Charles Leclerc finished just off the podium in 4th.
Sunday’s United States Grand Prix was another impressive performance by Charles Leclerc in the 2021 season.
After qualifying 5th, he started 4th because of Valtteri Bottas’ grid penalty. He maintained that spot on the opening lap and kept it until the end. It was a boring but satisfying day for the 24-year-old.
“A very, very good race,” Leclerc said. “A very boring race on my side but on the other hand it has been a very positive race for us. I mean the performance was incredible today and it’s great to see that on a track where we did not expect to be that quick. So a great surprise. I think all the upgrades are working as we want and it’s looking good for the future, so hopefully we can keep up that momentum for the rest of the season.
While Perez was hampered by diarrhea problems and having no drink during the race, Leclerc did an excellent job to end up only 10s behind the Mexican; that applies even more when you consider he was already 10s behind Checo ten laps into the race.
“The performance was just very, very good and I could see Sergio in front of me - only 10 seconds ahead – and actually in the last two stints I think we were a little bit quicker than them, so I was thinking about the podium but we just didn’t quite make it.”
Despite finishing 25 and 32s ahead of the McLaren’s respectively and Ferrari closing the gap to 3.5 points in the Constructors’ Championship, Leclerc’s feet are firmly on the ground. Nonetheless, he’s delighted with the upgrades delivered by his team this year.
“Let’s be realistic, it’s still very close even if in a race like this it can make us think that we are quite far ahead but it’s not the case. We need to keep working very, very hard. It’s going to be a close fight, but I have to say we have only had two or three upgrades this year and those two or three upgrades have made us make a big step forward and this is looking good for the future.”
As with other drivers, the Monegasque star admitted the race was incredibly difficult physically.
“It’s been incredibly difficult. It’s probably one of the most physical races I’ve done. Singapore is difficult but it's a different kind of difficult, it’s just very warm. But here physically with all the first sector, with the last sector too, with the bumps, with the heat, it was very physically demanding and the last `0 laps were very difficult to be honest.”
4th !! We didn't leave anything on the table today and taking home some good points. America you've been amazing 🇺🇸 pic.twitter.com/ouHzeT9887— Charles Leclerc (@Charles_Leclerc) October 24, 2021