Leclerc claims tensions with Sainz were exaggerated

Leclerc claims tensions with Sainz were exaggerated

Charles Leclerc claims that recent reports of friction between Carlos Sainz and himself at Ferrari have been exaggerated.

Leclerc’s tense radio discussion with the Scuderia’s pitwall during qualifying at the British Grand Prix last month at Silverstone was a reflection of the Monegasque’s frustration with his teammate.

Sainz was determined to get out and record his final flying lap time before any more accidents or weather stopped him because he was in danger of getting eliminated at the end of Q1.

However, the Spaniard was required by team orders to give up track position and stay behind Leclerc, which he did not do, infuriating the latter.

In response, Sainz said that it was unjust for him to forego his tyre temperatures by trailing Leclerc when he was the one who stood to lose his Q2 qualifying spot.

The dispute between the Ferrari duo wasn’t their first, despite being brief. Leclerc was unhappy when Sainz did not tow him during qualifying in Melbourne.

In the Austrian Grand Prix, it was the Spaniard who felt frustrated with Ferrari for not ordering Charles Leclerc to back off when the latter was on his tail early in the race.

The on-track chaos eventually gave rise to rumors that Leclerc and Sainz were becoming more tense. However, the Monesgague made an assurance that there are no rifts between the two contenders at the Scuderia.

“I am quite active on social media, so I see what’s been said all around,” Leclerc told Motorsport.com. “It’s blown out of proportion.

“I think, with Carlos. We have a great relationship.

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“Outside the car, we know how to work together, and we get on really well together because we share lots of interests.

“At the same time, there’s a lot of competitiveness in between us two. But we are in Formula 1, and I love the sport because there’s competitiveness. I think it’s great to have that.”

Leclerc claimed that when things don’t go as planned, there will inevitably be tense and stressful times over the radio.

“Sometimes there’s a bit of discussion over the radio on some situations,” he explained. “But it is just because we are competitive, and we both want to do the absolute best result possible.

“These are things that are normal.

“I think it also comes with being a Ferrari driver and being under the spotlight, probably more often than others. But that’s fine.

“In the end, within the team, we know that we have a good relationship and we are working towards the same goals.”

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