Charles Leclerc Reveals Slowing Down Prompted Easy Lewis Hamilton Pass During Azerbaijan GP

Published 06/07/2021, 8:00 AM EDT
Formula One F1 – Monaco Grand Prix – Circuit de Monaco, Monte Carlo, Monaco – May 19, 2021 Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc during a press conference ahead of the Monaco Grand Prix Pool via REUTERS/Sebastien Nogier


Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc had a stellar qualifying day on Saturday, taking pole for the second consecutive race weekend. However, he didn’t keep the lead for too long as Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton took the lead from him in the second lap. Explaining why that happened, Leclerc revealed that a tree branch got in his way.

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The Monégasque finished his race in fourth place, nearly missing out on a podium finish. However, the fact that he scored 12 points for the Maranello team must have given him immense satisfaction, especially after a DNS in his home race.

Charles Leclerc states that tree made him lose his position to Hamilton

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As quoted by Motorsport.com, Leclerc said, “It was starting to be quite OK in the first few laps. Then there was something that I think hasn’t been seen on TV. There was part of a tree in the middle of Turn 15, and there I actually lost quite a bit of time.

“I cut the track and I was a bit worried to gain time on Lewis behind that hadn’t cut the track. So I slowed down and then he overtook me. From then on, it was quite difficult, because I was behind Lewis in dirty air, which I struggled a little bit, as soon as I lost the DRS, Max overtook me.”

Formula One F1 – Formula One – Azerbaijan Grand Prix – Baku City Circuit, Baku, Azerbaijan – June 3, 2021 Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc during the press conference Pool via REUTERS/Francois Nel

“Then you are just in a vicious circle that is very difficult, because I had cars all around me that had a bit more pace than I did,Leclerc concluded.

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How did the Scuderia do in Baku?

With Leclerc’s pole position, the Maranello team looked set to win their first race of the season. Unfortunately, things didnt go that way, and the Monegasque ended up in P4.

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On the other hand, his teammate, Carlos Sainz, started his race in P5 after having a crash in Q3. He crossed the line in eighth place and earned four points in the process.

Formula One F1 – Azerbaijan Grand Prix – Baku City Circuit, Baku, Azerbaijan – Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc in action during practice REUTERS/Maxim Shemetov

The Italian team sit in third place in the constructor’s standing after the Azerbaijan GP, with 94 points to their name. With the talents of Leclerc and Sainz behind the wheel, the team believes they can get better results in the future.

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Arpit Gomes

485 articles

Arpit Gomes is an F1 author at EssentiallySports. Currently pursuing his Journalism degree from Xavier’s Institute, he is a big fan of McLaren and their driver Lando Norris and Daniel Ricciardo. Arpit always looks forward to the paddock moving to Spa and drivers dealing with the exciting Eau Rouge corner as well the straight at Monza.

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