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HomeNationalRed Bull look very strong, says Ferrari's Charles Leclerc MIGMG News

Red Bull look very strong, says Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc MIGMG News

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Ferrari driver Charles Leclerc topped the morning hours on the final day of Formula 1’s pre-season test in Bahrain on Saturday, but said Red Bull remained the team to beat.

The Monegasque lapped the Sahir circuit with a fastest time of one minute 31.024 seconds on the Pirelli C4 tyres, 0.418 faster than Mercedes’ George Russell, who used the softer C5 tyre.

“I feel we have a bit of work to do,” Leclerc told reporters after handing over to teammate Carlos Sainz for the final session.
Red Bull seems to be very strong in these three days.

Leclerc was runner-up to Red Bull’s double world champion Max Verstappen last year and the pair will renew their rivalry when the season starts in Bahrain next week.

The Ferrari driver said he felt in the best shape of his life after some extreme winter training in the Dolomites and was fully charged.

Ferrari started strongly last year, with Leclerc winning two of the first three races, before the challenge deteriorated into strategic mistakes, poor reliability and driver errors.

Matthias Binoto has since departed as boss, replaced by Frenchman Fred Wasser, tasked with delivering the team’s first championship since the constructors’ title in 2008.

Red Bull won 17 of 22 races last year, Verstappen triumphed in 15 of them.

Leclerc said the new SF-23 car is very different from last year’s.

“I tried a lot of different driving styles. “Looks like I finally found my way this morning,” he said.

“I expect us to be a bit quicker on the straights, maybe struggle a bit more in the corners,” he added.

“We’re still working a lot on trying to find the sweet spot of the car in terms of set-up, so hopefully there’s still some margin for that, that we haven’t found the sweet spot yet.”

Verstappen, who was fastest in both sessions on Thursday and the second on Friday night, told reporters he was happy with his car, even if it remains a work in progress.

“It was very good. I think the car runs really well. We just went through a lot of things that we wanted to try and it’s very interesting that we were trying.

“Very positive days for me and just enjoying driving the car,” he added.

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“Overall I think it’s definitely an improvement over last year.”


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