Ralf Schumacher feels Charles Leclerc has played a smart game at Ferrari to the point where he has “killed” Sebastian Vettel in the political fight.
Leclerc provided the latest chapter in the ever-increasing book on his rivalry with Sebastian Vettel, which will finish at the end of the 2020 season when Vettel’s current Scuderia deal runs it course.
The Monegasque caused a very costly collision with Vettel on the opening lap of the Styrian Grand Prix which resulted in both drivers having to retire from the race.
Leclerc immediately owned up to the error and apologised to Vettel and the team. Schumacher thinks that Leclerc is showing a maturity beyond his years which has helped him win the battle with his team-mate.
Before doing his interview with French media, @Charles_Leclerc told them he needs to talk to Seb first, so he waited until Seb finished his interview with RTL and talked/apologized to him first
— tami. (@Vetteleclerc) July 13, 2020
“I have to say honestly that Leclerc seems smarter than Sebastian in that way,” Schumacher told Sky Deutschland.
“He immediately stood up and said ‘my mistake’, which sounds a lot better than ‘I was unhappy with my car so I’m happy I stayed on the track’.
“He [Leclerc] is nice but he can still put his elbows out. In the team, he killed Sebastian politically. In no time. He is astonishingly mature for his age.”
Schumacher feels the calls for heads to roll at the top of the Ferrari management are a little premature, but recognises the ‘keep calm and carry on’ mantra can only get them so far.
“This really is a crash of historic proportions. It’s unbelievable,” he added.
“It can’t go on like this. Things have to change at Ferrari. They’ve been going in the wrong direction for years.
“Many demand consequences at the management level but I don’t think the time for that is yet. It doesn’t make sense in the middle of the season. But you have to start looking. There can be no “keep it up”.”