ICYMI: Leclerc disappointed, Verstappen secrets & teammate duels

20-06-2021 01:00
F1 News
ICYMI: Leclerc disappointed, Verstappen secrets & teammate duels

Max Verstappen has qualified on pole position for the 2021 French Grand Prix, with his World Championship rival Lewis Hamilton getting second place on the front row of the grid. Valtteri Bottas and Sergio Perez fill out the second row so we're set for a proper Mercedes v Red Bull battle in France. But what else happened? Here are the biggest news stories of the day in your daily F1 round-up. 

Wolff reviews qualifying

Remarkably, Mercedes actually needed an extra warm-up lap throughout qualifying to get the tyres operating in the right window. "We never managed it on the first run, it always took an extra one. We have to analyse where the bottleneck is," said the top man, predicting a victory for Verstappen without saying it out loud. According to Wolff, Red Bull is faster in the long runs and has more top speed.

The 2018 and 2019 editions at Paul Ricard were dominated by Mercedes on both Saturday and Sunday, but this season it will be harder than ever to complete the hat-trick. "We just need to see some wins in every area. There's not one part we're not looking at to improve our game," he concludes his story to Sky Sports. Click here for the full story. 

Leclerc unsatisfied 

Charles Leclerc saw his teammate Carlos Sainz qualify ahead of him today and struggled throughout the session this afternoon. This snapped the Monegasque driver's pole position streak as he was only able to qualify seventh ahead of the French Grand Prix tomorrow. The Ferrari driver was heard speaking on team radio explaining his struggles at the Circuit Paul Ricard.

After the session, Leclerc spoke to Sky Sports and explained how he struggled himself throughout the whole hour, "I struggled quite a bit today overall, but I was actually quite happy with my last lap in Q3 because before that it was a bit of a disaster but at the end, I managed to put a reasonable lap in." Click here for the full story. 

Qualifying duels

After the seventh qualifying session of the season, the relationships within some teams are starting to become clearer. Verstappen is far ahead of Perez, but so is Hamilton compared to Bottas. In the midfield, the differences are widening: Yuki Tsunoda, for example, has yet to beat his teammate Pierre Gasly in qualifying. The same goes for Nicholas Latifi compared to George Russell. Click here for the full battle results. 

Verstappen tight-lipped

On Friday morning, the Dutchman noticed something wrong with the front of the car on the radio. His engineer wanted to look at the front wing, but according to Verstappen, it was something else. " It was something with the tyres," he says mysteriously. What can be done about it he doesn't want to say. "You can do different things," he says, laughing. "But I can't say. But at least it wasn't in the front wing." Click here for the full story. 

Reports

Max Verstappen has claimed pole position in tomorrow's French Grand Prix, beating out Lewis Hamilton in second and Valtteri Bottas in third place. The Red Bull driver claimed his second pole position of the season after he claimed it in the season-opener. The Dutchman took pole with a lap time of 1:29.990, the first lap of the weekend in the 1:20's. Click here for the full qualifying report.

Max Verstappen goes into the French Grand Prix qualifying session as the favourite after opening a 0.747-second gap over the nearest Mercedes, Valtteri Bottas. Lewis Hamilton has some work to do after finding himself down in P5 following the chassis change between the two teammates. Carlos Sainz and Sergio Perez also find themselves in the mix. Click here for the full FP3 report. 

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