The Mexico City Grand Prix constitutes the 18th round of this year’s championship, and this far along the season two teams are having a close fight to see who is getting P3 in the constructor’s championship: McLaren and Scuderia Ferrari, they are split by only 3.5 points before this weekend’s race.
Charles Leclerc seems optimistic about the Italian team’s chances on not only closing the gap but skipping ahead of the papaya team to take P3. The Monegasque is already familiar with the track, as he took home pole position in 2019 (the last race being held before this year’s GP). He is expecting this weekend to be strong for the Scuderia.
“On paper it should be a better track for us compared to Austin,” he said, “but it’s also true to say that sometimes we’ve had good and bad surprises compared to what we expect on paper so let’s not get carried away too much and again, focus on our job. But it should be quite a strong race for us if we compare ourselves to the other midfield teams."
He also weighed in on the fight the Maranello-based team is having against McLaren.
“We are still chasing them; we are not in front of them, so it’s going to be very, very tight because they are a very strong team, very consistent from the beginning of the year, so it’s not going to be easy.
“But as I said we are working well as a team since the beginning of the season – every time we brought things [upgrades] it went in the right direction – so it’s looking good but again, we need to try and do everything perfect until the end of the season and I’m confident we’ve got chances to finish ahead of them in the championship.”
Leclerc, who is just 5.5 points ahead of his teammate Carlos Sainz, also recognized the momentum Ferrari has been having this season.
“Yes, we’ve had a few good races now. Especially Austin was a pretty strong race for us, so it’s good to see that. It’s not a track we expected to be strong or at least not stronger than McLaren, our main competitors this year, and we were, so it shows we are working in the right direction, and if we keep working at it then it’s looking good for the future. But yes, we need to keep our head down and keep working.
“Our high downforce package has always worked pretty well this season – in Monaco, in Budapest also – so yes, we’ll probably run with it here. That’s why I think we should be competitive [in Mexico],” he added in the end.