Ferrari Still Puzzled by Failure to Spot Leclerc Issue Before Monaco GP

Published 05/24/2021, 8:07 AM EDT
Formula One F1 – Monaco Grand Prix – Circuit de Monaco, Monte Carlo, Monaco – Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc in action during qualifying REUTERS/Eric Gaillard


A Sunday that started out in jubilant spirits ended in heartbreak soon thereafter for Ferrari driver Charles Leclerc. The Monegasque who was to start his home Grand Prix in pole position was ruled out of the race due to a problem with his car’s driveshaft. What was puzzling, however, was the fact that this issue went undetected by the team after Leclerc’s crash in qualifying the previous day. Ferrari themselves are trying to work out why they couldn’t detect this problem and deal with it earlier.

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Team boss Mattia Binotto said, “On our side we need to understand what happened really, and why it happened. And more than that, if we could have detected it in parc ferme from Saturday afternoon and race morning.

Formula One F1. Monaco Grand Prix. Circuit de Monaco, Monte Carlo, Monaco. The car of Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc is recovered after he crashed in qualifying Pool via REUTERS/Sebastien Nogier

“It’s more important really to understand why we didn’t detect a problem on the car. The problem was not there when he left the garage, so the problem started to appear in turn six.

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“The parts that went on the car were not showing any problem. So we will be looking at the parts in the next days, and looking at the data.”

It was initially suspected that Leclerc‘s inability to participate in the race was due to gearbox problems. Leclerc’s shunt which brought an end to qualifying played a big role in making that assumption. However, this was refuted by Leclerc and the team.

Although one of their drivers had a day to forget, the other made up for it by providing the Scuderia with a reason to smile on Sunday.

Carlos Sainz stars for Ferrari despite the heartbreaking DNS for Charles Leclerc

Sainz brought some joy to the Ferrari fans who have had little to cheer about in the last year or so. The ex-McLaren driver, who started out in P4, capitalized on the exit of his teammate and Valtteri Bottas to take home his first-ever podium, a P2 finish, for the iconic team in red.

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Formula One F1. Monaco Grand Prix. Circuit de Monaco, Monte Carlo, Monaco. Second placed Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz Jr. is celebrates second place with a trophy Pool via REUTERS/Gonzalo Fuentes

Sainz’s performance in Monaco helped him catch up to Leclerc in the Drivers’ championship standings. He currently has 38 points to his name compared to Leclerc’s 40. More importantly, his showing in Monaco keeps the Prancing Horse in the hunt for a ‘best of the rest’ finish.

Ferrari fans will hope that Sainz can provide more of the same in Baku and that Leclerc will have better luck. Can the Ferrari duo spring a surprise or two, come June 6? Only time will tell.

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Ronan Carvalho

1063 articles

Ronan Carvalho is senior F1 author for Essentiallysports. Ronan is currently pursuing his Journalism degree from St. Xavier's College.

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