Leclerc admits to struggling with tyre management during races

04-08-2019 18:52
by Nicolás Quarles van Ufford
General
Leclerc admits to struggling with tyre management during races

Ferrari star Charles Leclerc has identified tyre management as something he still struggles with during races, as the Monegasque admitted teammate Sebastian Vettel does it better with the German overtaking him for third in the final laps of the Hungarian Grand Prix.

Leclerc qualified in fourth and took third place in the first lap of the race on Sunday, with the 21-year-old capitalising on Valtteri Bottas getting squeezed off track by teammate Lewis Hamilton.

After those opening laps, it became quite a lonely race for Leclerc, who wasn't able to keep up with the rapid Hamilton and race leader Max Verstappen ahead. By the end of the race, the gap ahead was a full minute, as Leclerc even gave up third place to Vettel, who was quicker in the final stages of the race because of his superior tyre management.

“The tyres were going off," Leclerc was quoted by Crash.net when asked about that final duel with his teammate.

“We pitted quite early on the first stint, mostly because I was struggling with tyres and then on the second stint towards the end."

The Ferrari number 16 admitted issues with tyre management have been a problem for him before, as he has noticed Vettel is better at extending the life of his rubber.

“I’ve been struggling with tyres again, the rears, and that’s something that Seb is doing better than me at the moment in the long runs where there’s degradation.

“So I need to understand where it’s coming from and try to understand that."

As usual, Leclerc doesn't shy away from criticising himself, with the second-year Formula 1 driver currently sitting fifth in the drivers' standings with 132 points after 12 races.

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