Monaco Grand Prix – Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc will start the Monte Carlo race from a disastrous P16 after the team made a strategic error during Q1.
Leclerc was eliminated at the end of Q1 while watching on from the garage. The local driver had put in a time the team thought was good enough to get him through into Q2 and, after Leclerc had a minor delay when he had to go to the FIA weightbridge, Ferrari didn’t send him back out for a second run.
Ironically, it was teammate Sebastian Vettel’s final run in Q1 that knocked Leclerc out of qualifying, as the German driver himself needed to improve after a lacklustre first run.
Leclerc was obviously annoyed, shrugging off consoling backslaps from his mechanics and shaking his head as he went upstairs to speak to Ferrari management.
Speaking to media afterwards, he said: “I’m extremely disappointed. Disappointing to be out in Q1 in a Ferrari, even more when you are at home, and even more when you’re at a track where you can’t overtake. We can’t afford to do these things, and this is a big, big disappointment.”
He said he hasn’t yet got an explanation as to why he wasn’t send back out for a second run, a run that should have seen him through into Q2 and avoiding a race cooped up in the midfield: “I will speak the team for an explanation for the decisions behind this. I didn’t have any explanation yet.”
“I asked them whether we need to go again, and they said they think we’re OK.”
“Clearly, today, we got it wrong and we need to understand to make these decisions better.”