Leclerc hopeful Ferrari can keep advantage, wet or dry

Henry Valantine
Charles Leclerc adjusts his race suit. Hungary July 2022.

Ferrari driver Charles Leclerc prepares to get into his car in free practice. Hungary July 2022.

Charles Leclerc hopes to see Ferrari maintain their pace advantage over Red Bull in both wet and dry conditions, as is expected around the Hungaroring this weekend.

Leclerc and Ferrari team-mate Carlos Sainz topped a free practice session each on Friday, with World Championship leader Max Verstappen admitting that Red Bull could not compete with the speed of the F1-75 during practice running.

Red Bull had something of an off-day by their standards in practice on Friday, with McLaren’s Lando Norris even getting ahead of both Red Bulls in FP2, where Ferrari looked comfortable and quick from the off.

But with rain forecast on Saturday, how the conditions will affect the cars is currently an unknown – but Leclerc hopes Ferrari can replicate their speed in qualifying.

“I don’t know,” he replied when asked if Ferrari could keep their advantage on Saturday, speaking to

“I mean, it looks like it’s going to rain tomorrow, so we’ll have to be on top of this and obviously put the tyres in the right window, which is always a difficult thing whenever it’s raining.

“So, this will be our main priority for tomorrow, but hopefully, if we can manage to put them in the right window, we will also have this advantage.”

But the changeable conditions are forecast to see the weather dry up again on Sunday, and with the cars entering parc fermé conditions when they leave the pits for qualifying, the teams may have to compromise on qualifying and race set-up once they are frozen on Saturday.

“Yeah, we did,” Leclerc added when asked if Ferrari ran set-ups for different weather. “It’s been a very productive day. We changed quite a lot of things on the car on my side, FP1 was quite tricky, FP2 we took the right road, so confident that we did the right work for Sunday.”

As for Sainz, he appeared relaxed about his feeling within his Ferrari over the course of practice, adding that after trying more than one car set-up, he feels confident that he will be able to find the right way for him to succeed this weekend.

“Yeah, for sure, straight out of the box in FP1 felt very comfortable, very happy with the car balance,” Sainz said.

“But obviously, you always feel like there’s things to improve on things to find. We tried a couple of different setup directions going into FP2, which made us lose a bit of confidence and performance.

“But we know exactly why and for tomorrow on Sunday, we believe that we can, we can go back to where we were in FP1 and be again, more competitive.”


Looking ahead to the Hungarian Grand Prix

The Hungarian Grand Prix is the final race before Formula 1's summer break.