Charles Leclerc says it will be hard for drivers to get back into that mental “bubble” when Formula 1 does return.
The season was meant to start with the Australian Grand Prix in March, but the COVID-19 pandemic has forced the opening nine rounds to be put on hold.
There does appear to be some light at the end of the tunnel though with an Austrian Grand Prix on July 5 looking like a real possibility, but once the call does come for Formula 1 to get going again, Leclerc admits it won’t be easy for drivers to just go back in to that mental “bubble”.
“It’s going to be difficult: the mindset and to find exactly the bubble you need to be in just before getting into the car.,” he told Motorsport.com and selected media in a video call from his Monaco apartment.
“This is something that you are getting better at every time you do it, so once you don’t do it for a long time, then it’s difficult to get back to this state. So yeah, it’s going to be difficult.
“In the end at home I’m trying to train every week or so to try and put myself in the zone, even though it’s not to get in the car: it’s most probably just to cook pasta after that!
“But yeah, just to train myself to be in this zone, and I think it’s important every time I go training I try to be as focussed as possible as I would go in the car, to keep me trained on that.”
Asked what he is missing most during the current lockdown conditions, Leclerc said: “Racing. Racing and I think seeing people, being with people. Because at the end being here in this apartment for a few weeks starts to be a bit boring.”
Leclerc’s Ferrari team could face a huge challenge in trying to catch-up to their rivals in a shortened season with the SF1000 looking down on the performance of Mercedes and Red Bull.
So the feedback he provides to the team will be more important than ever before.
“We’ve been struggling a bit during testing,” he explained.
“So we need to catch up: whether we’ll be able to or not, I don’t know. But last year, we’ve had a good progression throughout the year.
“I think we need to keep working as we did last year. And I’m pretty sure the results will come. But it is going to be a difficult season for everyone, because as soon as it starts it is not going to stop. And we won’t have any breaks to develop the car more than the others.
“So I think the work on track will be extremely important and more than it has been every other year, because we’ll spend a lot of time on track whenever the season will restart.
“It’s going to be very important to be focussed and ready from the first race on, and as drivers to give the right feedback to the team and try and help the team in the right direction straight away.”