Leclerc celebrates his birthday: His career so far...

16-10-2020 06:45 | Updated: 16-10-2020 10:04
by GPblog.com
F1 News
Leclerc celebrates his birthday: His career so far...

Today Charles Leclerc turned 23. The young Monegasque cannot celebrate his birthday in a big way because of all the coronavirus measures, but we look back for a moment on his already impressive career in motorsport.

The beginning of a rivalry

Leclerc starts karting in 2005 and already impresses with the win in the regional karting championship. He wins the CAPA championship in 2005, 2006 and 2007 and also takes the title in the French Cadet Championship in 2009. He then left Monaco for karting in the rest of Europe.

In the KF3 class, the highest karting class in Europe for children aged 11 to 15, Leclerc won immediately in 2011 and joined the management of Nicolas Todt. In 2012, Leclerc made the step to KZ2 with ART, where he won the WSK Euro Series title and took second place in the overall championship. In his final year, he again took second place in the highest class of the karting championship. Number one of that year was his big rival: Max Verstappen.

Leclerc made the switch to formula cars in 2014 and he made an immediate impression there as well. As a seventeen-year-old he came second in the Formula 2.0 Renault 2.0 Alps championship and scored two victories. The following year he finished fourth in the Formula 3 championship for the Dutch Van Amersfoort team, despite 4 victories.

The big breakthrough

His real breakthrough came in 2016. Leclerc impressed in GP3 and dominated the series for Prema. As a new talent of the Ferrari youth academy, he scores three victories, four poles and on the podium a total of eight times.

In 2017 he made the step to Formula 2, and whilst most rookies need a year to get settled, Leclerc was competitive immediately. He won no less than seven races, was on pole eight times and took ten podiums. He strolled to the title with ease, finishing 72 points ahead of closest rival Artem Markelov.

Leclerc steams through

After such a year, it is not surprising that Leclerc was presented as the new Alfa Romeo driver in 2018. Sauber had been completely renamed Alfa Romeo. He scored 39 points, where his teammate Marcus Ericsson only managed nine, and his consistency and pure speed impressed others in the paddock.

This earned him a promotion to Ferrari, replacing Kimi Raikkonen. The move made him the second youngest driver to ever race for the Italian team.

The Ferrari dream

In 2019 and 2020 teammate Sebastian Vettel had no answer to the fast Monegasque. Leclerc is faster in qualifying, and also in the races. In 2021 Ferrari will therefore choose a different path. Leclerc is supported even further and Vettel has to leave. 

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