McLaren Boss Brown Believes Ferrari’s Dismal F1 Season Due to Lack of ‘Two Charles Leclercs’

Published 02/06/2021, 5:55 AM EST
SOCHI, RUSSIA: Pole position qualifier Charles Leclerc of Monaco and Ferrari celebrates in parc ferme during qualifying for the F1 Grand Prix of Russia at Sochi Autodrom on September 28, 2019 in Sochi, Russia. (Photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Images)


In the 2020 season, McLaren triumphed over an exciting group of mid-field teams to finish the campaign as the ‘best of the rest.’ The Woking-based outfit’s remarkable upward trajectory is commendable.

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Only a few years ago, they were competing at the back of the grid. The growth of the team bodes well for their future, but the team’s CEO Zak Brown believes last season’s success may not have been possible if Ferrari had ‘two Charles Leclercs instead of one racing for them.

The Italian team had a dreadful 2020 campaign. They finished the season in sixth place on the championship table, and the only bright sport in a forgettable campaign was their ace Monegasque driver.

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Leclerc single-handedly scored two-thirds of the team’s points. He also bagged two podiums in a car that in no way deserved to come even close to the podium. Moreover, he achieved all this whilst convincingly beating a four-time world champion, not only in qualifying but also in the race (although he did lose out to Vettel in the F1 gaming world).

Many tout Leclerc to be a future world champion, and it’s hard to see why he wouldn’t be.

SPA, BELGIUM: Pole position qualifier Charles Leclerc of Ferrari celebrates in parc ferme. F1 Grand Prix of Belgium. Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps in Spa, Belgium. (Photo by Will Taylor-Medhurst/Getty Images)

Brown claims another Charles Leclerc would have been handy for Ferrari

Brown believes if the Scuderia had two drivers of his caliber, the championship table could have been very different. He said, “If you had two Charles Leclercs, I don’t think they would have finished the season in sixth.”

But with the team now replacing Vettel with ex-McLaren driver Carlos Sainz, Brown tips them to come back strong. “Ferrari you can never count them out with the resources they had. Sebastian Vettel had a poor season for whatever reason and now they have Carlos.”

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BUDAPEST, HUNGARY – Lando Norris of Great Britain driving the (4) McLaren F1 Team MCL35 Renault leads Sebastian Vettel of Germany driving the (5) Scuderia Ferrari SF1000 during qualifying for the F1 Grand Prix of Hungary at Hungaroring in Budapest, Hungary. (Photo by Leonhard Foeger/Pool via Getty Images)

Last season there was less than a 100-point gap separating the seventh placed team from the third placed team. There were a number of unexpected wins and podium winners, too. With the COVID-enforced regulations, the cars are more or less going to have the same performance output. As a result, Brown thinks fans could be in for yet another entertaining campaign ahead.

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He said, “I think three to seven is going to be the same group but you could throw balls in the air and the third placed team could be seventh.

“There was nothing in it. At one point last year, all those teams were the quickest and when it is that close, it is exciting for the fans of the sport, but also nerve-racking.”

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Will the 2021 season live up to all the hype? We shall find out soon.

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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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