Charles Leclerc believes that there is more performance to unlock from both himself and the Ferrari SF90 after lowering the testing benchmark on day seven.
The Monegasque driver spent much of Thursday morning whittling down his own personal best time a setting the fastest times of the test, predominantly on the C5 tyre.
However, competitive times on the C2 tyre suggested that even faster times were achievable in the Ferrari.
When asked about the competitiveness of the car, Leclerc said that the SF90 remained “very balanced”, but believed more pace was to come from himself and the team.
“It hasn’t changed since day one to be honest, it feels comfortable,” said Leclerc.
“The balance has been pretty nice and it hasn’t changed today, so it’s a positive day, especially after the lack of running yesterday it’s a good morning for us. It feels good to be on top, but it doesn’t mean anything.
“Like every team, we are not flat out, there’s still some margin, obviously a bit in myself [too]. I still have to learn and I get more comfortable in the car lap after lap. It’s looking good for now.
“I think my weakness is the technical knowledge that I have in the car, but that is something that I will learn with the experience I get. On the driving side, the car feels very good, the car feels very balanced.”
Leclerc refused to be drawn in on questions about how competitive Mercedes and Red Bull are during pre-season testing.
“It’s difficult to say, it’s testing. I think we are looking strong at the moment. Whether or not they are sandbagging more or less, we don’t know and we’ll only know in qualifying but, for now, we are pretty happy with the job that we’re doing.”