Charles Leclerc’s ‘that’s rude’ radio exchanged explained after Monaco GP victory

Michelle Foster
Charles Leclerc and Ferrari celebrate his Monaco GP win

Charles Leclerc and Ferrari celebrate his Monaco GP win

Charles Leclerc’s “that’s rude” message to new race engineer Bryan Bozzi was nothing more than a bit of banter as the Ferrari driver was ordered to win the Monaco Grand Prix by driving as slow as possible.

Starting from pole position and leading off the line, doing so again for the restart, Leclerc controlled the pace around the streets of Monte Carlo.

Charles Leclerc won the Monaco GP ahead of Oscar Piastri

And by doing so he effectively told Ferrari’s rivals if they could or could not come in for an in-race pit stop after everyone was permitted a free tyre change after the lap 1 stoppage for Sergio Perez’s shunt.

With the question of to pit or not to pit dominating the airwaves, Leclerc and Ferrari decided if anyone of the top five, which included Oscar Piastri, Carlos Sainz, Lando Norris and George Russell, had the gap to do so without losing a position.

Ferrari wanted to ensure they didn’t, especially after nothing Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton’s pace after they did stop.

Telling Leclerc at least twice to slow down to prevent the McLarens and Russell from gaining a pit stop margin, the Monegasque driver wanted to talk numbers with his new race engineer, Bozzi.

Leclerc: Just for your info… Do you want to know the margin?
Bozzi: No Charles, we are not interested, we know.
Leclerc: You said no, right?
Bozzi: No, we are not interested.
Leclerc: That’s rude

It, though, was all said in jest as the Monegasque native raced, if you will, to his first-ever Monaco Grand Prix victory.

“This is a very nice one for Leclerc,” says Doornbos. On Sunday, Leclerc no longer had to work too hard for it. “We have seen this before, but pit stops are still made, but not on a circuit like Monaco,” says the analyst, who spent a large part of his life there.

Former F1 driver Robert Doornbos reckons banter aside, Ferrari had just one goal on Sunday.

“He wanted to let his team know that he had a lot of speed left. The team said they weren’t interested. The team had only one goal and one mission, and that is to finish that race,” he told Ziggo Sport Race Café.

“It doesn’t matter that he won so little. This is the most important thing, this is Monaco, his home Grand Prix, this is a gem.”

Key takeaways from the Monaco Grand Prix

👉Monaco Grand Prix driver ratings: Charles Leclerc’s day of glory as Perez & Magnussen shock

👉Monaco GP data: Mercedes ‘survival’ strategy conditioned by Alonso’s traffic denies fight for the win

‘It’s anticipation, it’s gambling’

But at the end of a rather boring Grand Prix, one in which the top ten finished as they began on the grid, former F1 driver Jan Lammers called it a “tactical game”

“It is what it is,” he said. “You have to do what it takes to win. That was this.

“If you start to pull that field apart, you create holes. If someone can make a free pit stop without losing a place, they are on fresh tyres. If there is a Safety Car and others do come in, that person is immediately in the lead.

“It’s anticipation, it’s gambling. It’s a logical game,..”

“But,” he added, “that doesn’t make it any more fun.

Read next: ‘And he has Adrian Newey’ – Latest Ferrari claim made in glowing assessment of Fred Vasseur’s reign