Not McLaren- Ferrari F1 Drivers Name ‘Strange’ New Team Jeopardizing Smooth Run at Mexico

Published 11/06/2021, 6:16 AM EDT
Formula One F1 – Mexico Grand Prix – Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez, Mexico City, Mexico – November 5, 2021 Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc in action during practice REUTERS/Henry Romero


Ferrari arrive in Mexico only 3.5 points behind their rivals – McLaren; they also arrive in Mexico hoping to extend the lead with no peril to their weekend. However, while McLaren may not threaten the Prancing Horses, there is another midfield team with incredible pace at the Autodrom. Charles Leclerc opened up about why Ferrari might not have the breezy weekend in Mexico that they initially expected.

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

After the two free practice sessions, Ferrari learned two things about the midfield: McLaren aren’t as weak as they expected, and AlphaTauri are a rocket on the track.

And Charles Leclerc was shocked at the unexpected challenge from the Faenza outfit. “It’s strange because we came here thinking that we would be quite competitive but actually AlphaTauri looks very competitive.”

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

Formula One F1 – Mexico Grand Prix – Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez, Mexico City, Mexico – November 5, 2021. AlphaTauri’s Yuki Tsunoda in action during practice REUTERS/Henry Romero

Leclerc explained it will not be an easy result in qualifying. “The Honda guys in general look very competitive and the McLaren also will be there, so it’s going to be very, very tight tomorrow.”

AlphaTauri’s Pierre Gasly found himself sandwiched between the Ferraris in P6; his teammate, Yuki Tsunoda, finished in eighth behind Leclerc. An unexpected threat in the midfield battle in Mexico.

Ferrari worry about the pace in Mexico

The drivers in red ended their first day in Mexico a little disappointed. Hoping to take on the challenge with the incredible pace seems so far in America and Turkey, Friday was dubious for the team.

Even Carlos Sainz was worried about the Honda-powered white bulls. “What we are trying to do now going into tomorrow is make sure we put it in the right window and gain those extra couple of tenths that can put us in front of the AlphaTauri, that, at the moment, they look a bit quicker.”

However, the AlphaTauris aren’t the only things blocking Ferrari from success. Both drivers faced problems with the car during the session.

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

Charles Leclerc ended FP2 complaining about engine issues. “We had some things going on in the background that wasn’t pleasing to drive, but nothing too big, and everything we can control, so it’s no big problems…”

Formula One F1 – Mexico Grand Prix – Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez, Mexico City, Mexico – November 5, 2021. Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz Jr. in action during practice REUTERS/Henry Romero

Sainz too believed that his machine was not 100% in the sessions. ” We can come back up a bit if we nail the car balance for tomorrow and we go in the right direction with set-up changes because I have a feeling we are not maximizing our package yet.”

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

With a lot of Mexican spice in the midfield battle, the upcoming qualifying session is going to be an interesting one.

Watch this story: F1 Drivers Fighting on Track

Enjoyed reading this article? Download our exclusive app to get 24x7 coverage, latest memes and social media banter. Click here to download.

SHARE THIS ARTICLE :

ADVERTISEMENT

Shreya Sanjeev

615 articles

Shreya Sanjeev is an F1 author at EssentiallySports. Having attained a journalism degree from St Xavier's College, she finds comfort in the sound of her keyboard while typing and excitement in the sound of F1 cars speeding on a track. A street circuit and Daniel Ricciardo fan through and through, Shreya claims the 2018 Monaco GP to be one of her favorite races of all time.

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT