Monza hasn’t changed Vettel/Leclerc relationship

Date published: September 19 2019

Ross Brawn insists Ferrari must be cautious with the "potentially explosive" rivalry between Sebastian Vettel and Charles Leclerc.

Charles Leclerc insists his relationship with Ferrari team-mate Sebastian Vettel hasn’t changed following the Italian Grand Prix.

In a farcical Q3 Charles Leclerc put his SF90 on pole with Vettel ending up P4, but the four-time World Champion accused his team-mate of not following Ferrari’s script of returning the tow for Vettel down the straight – Vettel had been on hand to provide a tow for Leclerc during his only Q3 flying lap.

However, Leclerc insisted it wasn’t intentional and their relationship has not changed.

“I don’t think it changed [our relationship],” Leclerc told reporters ahead of the Singapore Grand Prix.

“Obviously after Saturday there were some doubts about what I did but I explained myself and since then everything was fine.

“I’ve been completely honest and I’m always honest but there was nothing done wanted in Monza – It was a very tricky situation at the beginning of the lap with the big mess.

“It made us quite late to go to the finish line but there was definitely no want from me to sacrifice Seb’s second lap or whatever.”

Leclerc’s recent form has led to calls for Ferrari to treat him as a clear No.1 driver, but the 21-year-old insisted the team operate with a balanced mentality towards the pair.

“I’ve never felt that way. I think overall the team inside of it… I don’t know if from the outside if it looks different… but from the inside it’s very balanced,” he explained.

“There have been situations in the past where I’ve helped Sebastian, some others where he has helped me. I think that’s the way forward for the team. I think the team is doing everything for it’s benefit and I think that is the most important thing.

“We are here to perform at our best, which is what we try to do, but at the end I’m very happy with how the team is at the moment.

“I think to be a team player always pays off at the end of the day. The team is doing everything for us and if you have one driver who is an egotist and just looks at himself, it’s not great.

“Then there might be some situations where you have to look at yourself but I think you just need to find the right balance.”

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