So since now its been announced by Ferrari that Leclerc will drive for the team in 2019 how will he do in the Scuderia and will he be enough to challenge Vettel?
Charles’s form at the start of this season has been quite something getting a Sauber into Q3 on numerous occasions when arguably the car does not belong in Q3, had an off in Bahrain during qualifying, but a young driver needs to learn from these mistakes. He later admitted shortly after he ‘’was pushing too hard’’ and ‘’needs to calm down’’ which shows forward thinking and stable and mature head on a driver.
Another example of this was in Spain when he got ahead of Alonso in the opening lap. He kept Alonso behind him for most of the opening stint and seem very unfazed by it, He seems to hold pressure quite well but will it hold up driving for the mighty Ferrari time will tell.
The only slip up that might have worried Ferrari sightly was his bad form in the wet in Hockenheim with his spin but it was his only real test in wet running in F1 so far so was bound to make a mistake which I’m sure he will learn from going forward, Charles as a driver at 19 will only get quicker, not slower.
Ferrari really needed a stronger line-up going forward, Kimi is no slouch even today but really is not consistent enough over a whole season and would be good to see Vettel pushed and challenged more by a team-mate. No doubt that Charles will take time to fit into Ferrari but I expect within a few races next season he could be fighting for podiums next season. I expect Ferrari to have a great car off the bat next season not fall backward so pressure on the young driver will high but I suspect he will do just fine.
It will arguably be the strongest line-up very much neck and neck between Red Bull’s line up of Gasly and Verstappen.
This will be also the first time Vettel will have a new team-mate since he joined Ferrari in 2015, It has been known he has enjoyed Kimi’s presence in the team and has been eager for him to stay, I would imagine he was not too happy about this change and tells me he has no veto on who his teammate is.
Some people have suggested that Leclerc will ‘destory’ Vettel next season like Ricciardo did in 2014 during his last season in Red Bull, Personally think that’s unlikely as when Ricciardo joined in 2014 it was during a season when new regulations were introduced, won’t be the case this time around, Vettel is still the number 1 in Ferrari going into 2019 and knows the power unit and car inside out at this stage so I don’t expect a repeat of 2014.
Will Leclerc win a race in 2019, I’m gonna call it and say yes, He is new blood for Ferrari and future for the team.