According to Charles Leclerc, a clear step forward was taken during the final races of the 2023 F1 season, but Ferrari is certainly not yet approaching the racing speed that Red Bull has. In other words, Ferrari still has a lot of work to do in the coming winter period.
Ferrari narrowly failed to finish second in the constructors’ championship during the final race of the season, falling a few points short. However, Ferrari managed to almost completely eliminate its deficit to Mercedes during the last part of the season. Charles Leclerc’s much better performance was particularly striking.
“It’s not easy,” said Leclerc. “I think we had two parts of the season: before Japan and after Japan, as far as I’m concerned.”
“I feel much better in the car since the car upgrade in Japan. We worked on the consistency of the car in different conditions and that helped my driving style.”
“I like to have a car with some oversteer and a strong front end but during the first half of the season I didn’t have that.”
According to Leclerc, Ferrari had expected to encounter overheating at the Yas Marina Circuit, but that turned out not to be the case.
“We expected to mainly have problems with overheating. That is normally one of our weaknesses, but this time we have done a good job in that area,” said Leclerc, who was then asked whether that is a good prospect for next year.
“It gives me confidence for next year, hopefully we will know more about the car’s set-up and which aspects of the car need to be further developed.”
“On the other hand, we are still far from the speed that Red Bull has, especially in terms of race speed. We all realize that we still have a lot of work to do in that area.”