Can controlled Leclerc be caught by misfiring rivals?

Monday, April 11, 2022
author picture Alice Dupont
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Can Controlled Leclerc Be Caught by Misfiring Rivals?

Can controlled Leclerc be caught by Misfiring rivals? In Bahrain‚ Leclerc's misfortune was highlighted when he failed to take victory. Now‚ he has to deal with Hamilton and Verstappen's challenge. What is Leclerc's strategy and how can Misfiring rivals catch him? Let's discuss these points in this article.

Leclerc's strategy

Charles Leclerc‚ one of F1's most consistent drivers‚ is riding high in the championship with his recent win in Bahrain. While his teammate Max Verstappen is also a promising young driver‚ the Frenchman's strategy may be catching some of his rivals by surprise. Having won two consecutive races‚ Leclerc is already 34 points ahead of the nearest challenger in the championship. The French driver has now won two straight races against Verstappen‚ ensuring podium finishes in his championship. The Ferrari team principal Mattia Binotto made the right decision when he backed Vettel over the young Belgian. While Vettel was a four-time world champion‚ Leclerc had only driven one season in Formula One. Leclerc was so unreliable in his debut season with the team that Binotto blamed his predecessors for the poor results. However‚ this is not how F1 works. Red Bull's Sergio Perez finished second‚ but was a distant second to Leclerc. Lewis Hamilton finished third‚ while Mercedes' George Russell scored its first podium of the season. In the other races‚ Red Bull's Lando Norris and Daniel Ricciardo finished fifth‚ with Renault's Esteban Ocon taking the seventh and eighth positions. Neither car managed to catch up to Leclerc‚ but it is possible for misfiring rivals to catch his strategy. It may be that Lewis Hamilton's Ferrari has the best car in the championship‚ but his teammate Verstappen was able to keep a comfortable gap behind the Red Bulls in the first three races of this year. He is the only realistic hope for the podium in the 2022 Australian Grand Prix‚ but he will be caught by a misfiring rival. Mercedes has been suffering from poor tyres this weekend. But Mercedes' improved speed means that they can make more pit stops and make more mistakes than the Red Bull. Verstappen‚ in particular‚ has a pit strategy that can be caught by misfiring rivals. In the race‚ Red Bull is hoping for a quick pass on Hamilton‚ but the strategy may not work.

Misfiring rivals

Charles Leclerc entered F2 with three years of experience and as reigning GP3 champion. His talent and speed merged with those of his two teammates to create a winning combination. At the start of the season‚ the Frenchman claimed eight consecutive pole positions‚ a record that was only broken by his disqualification due to a technical infringement in Hungary. However‚ this race was not the only humbling experience that Leclerc had to overcome. Ferrari is expected to focus on the engine problem next week. Leclerc's steady and consistent performance has set up the team for a title challenge‚ but Mercedes haven't made it explicit. Sebastian Vettel was expected to hit the ground running and backed Leclerc and his new teammate. That was a major step in the right direction‚ but it also posed a risk. As Leclerc's pace grew‚ his teammate Sebastian Vettel dropped back to fifth in Australia. His Ferrari had a significant advantage in pace - he would have passed Vettel if he'd kept it up. The two finished a full lap apart. Vettel dropped back to fifth on the final lap‚ but the speed gap meant that Leclerc could have overtaken him.

Hamilton's challenge

In the opening laps of the race in Baku‚ Charles Leclerc led the field‚ but a late attack by Lewis Hamilton put him under pressure. The Mercedes driver‚ on the faster medium tire compound‚ tried to overtake Leclerc‚ but the Red Bull driver moved across the track to the right and forced Hamilton into the run-off area. Leclerc defended well‚ and Hamilton was forced to cut the first chicane. In the final race of the season‚ Leclerc was unable to maintain control‚ but his race was a triumph. The Frenchman was the closest competitor to the Ferrari factory‚ so the Italian fans may have had a stronger impression of him than Hamilton. The Dutchman is now 34 points ahead of his nearest rival in the championship‚ and had an advantage of almost two clear victories against Verstappen. The Mercedes driver's victory in the Grand Prix of the Americas came after a tough weekend for both teams. The Mercedes team was struggling more than the Red Bulls‚ but Hamilton's victory was a victory nonetheless. Hamilton has won seven races this year‚ but Leclerc's dominance in the championship suggests that it isn't over yet. In fact‚ he's yet to beat Leclerc. In the first two races of the year‚ the two teams were virtually level in terms of pace. In the first race in Australia‚ Leclerc was the quickest. Hamilton and Verstappen swapped positions four times. Both drivers overtook each other on long straights‚ while Leclerc followed through turns two and three and swept around the outside to take the lead. However‚ the team's performance has come under scrutiny and the championship has been relegated to third place. The Australian Grand Prix was Charles Leclerc's first win on Australian soil. He also took pole position after two red flags in qualifying. Max Verstappen‚ Sebastian Perez‚ and George Russell completed the front row. Meanwhile‚ Hamilton is 29 points behind Leclerc in the championship. However‚ Leclerc's victory is no guarantee of success in the rest of the season.

Verstappen's challenge

The undercut failed to give Verstappen the edge on the final lap of the race. The Dutchman was four seconds adrift of Leclerc as Red Bull brought him in for a last-lap undercut attempt. In normal circumstances‚ four seconds is too far behind to challenge a driver of a higher class. However‚ Verstappen did have DRS to help him battle back‚ but the Frenchman won out in the end. Charles Leclerc is the main threat to the reigning world champion. In both of their recent fights‚ Leclerc has looked relaxed‚ but there is always the possibility that the two will get heated. Drive to Survive producers are clearly anticipating a heated rivalry between these two drivers. If it is not the first time the two drivers have competed for the championship‚ it is a sign that both drivers are eager to prove themselves. Both Charles Leclerc and Max Verstappen have a lot in common. They were childhood friends and competed together in Italy as children. Verstappen won almost every championship in 2010 and Leclerc came in at the back. Unlike last year‚ the pair have been competing at an international level since 2011. However‚ the footage from the 2012 WSK Euro Series shows Verstappen colliding with Leclerc. Verstappen's response has gained meme status. After the Australian Grand Prix‚ Charles Leclerc extended his lead to 33 points. With two races to go‚ Verstappen's challenge to Leclerc will continue. While it was disappointing for Verstappen to retire his car with an engine failure‚ it's a welcome sign that the Red Bull driver is improving his car. With Leclerc's win‚ Red Bull has improved its position in the Constructors' Championship and George Russell now moves into third place. The Red Bulls led after the first lap after the Safety Car intervention‚ but the Mercedes and McLaren were chasing. Hamilton was the first to pit‚ but Verstappen was behind the leaders. Perez‚ meanwhile‚ remained in second position. Hamilton's lap ended with a Safety Car‚ which meant that he had pitted earlier than Leclerc‚ but Perez had the advantage with warmer tyres.