‘Leclerc and Ferrari close to breaking point’

Michelle Foster

'Charles Leclerc and Ferrari close to breaking point'

Six races into his Ferrari career and Charles Leclerc’s relationship with the Scuderia is “close to breaking point” according to a report in the Italian media.

Leclerc’s first season with Ferrari has been undone on two sides, team orders and errors.

While the former has seen the Monegasque driver firmly put in his place as Ferrari’s number two on several occasions, the latter has also cost him points.

The latest mistake from Ferrari came in qualifying for Leclerc’s home race, the Monaco Grand Prix.

The Scuderia left him in the pits in Q1 believing his time was good enough to progress. It wasn’t, and he was knocked out of qualifying by team-mate Sebastian Vettel.

Leclerc responded by attempting to put in an epic drive from 15th on the grid to the delight of his home fans.

While initially it went well with passes on Lando Norris and Romain Grosjean, it came to naught when he tried to pass Nico Hulkenberg and instead suffered a puncture that would ultimately end his race.

“The Monaco Grand Prix is likely to cost Ferrari dearly,” reads the opening line from Italy’s Formula Passion.

The report added that “relations between Maranello and the managers who manage the Monegasque’s career are already close to breaking point”, so much so that Leclerc disobeyed orders on Sunday.

Ferrari wanted Leclerc to cautiously make his way into the points whereas he went into the grand prix with a risk everything attitude.

It was, according to Formula Passion, a “scream” to rival teams that all is not well between Leclerc and Ferrari.

The report concluded: “The first 10 laps of Charles Leclerc’s race in the Principality race with overtakes at Loews and Rascasse, yes full of fury, but also a silent revolt towards a management repeatedly penalising him.

“It was a ‘scream’ that crossed the paddock and found ears ready to listen to it. In particular, the interest of a top-level team with potential availability took shape late on Sunday.”

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