Charles Leclerc got his second pole and his second victory of the season in the third round of the course, proving to be the most regular and fastest driver at this start of 2022, where his closest rival, Max Verstappen, added his second retirement, a situation that It begins to be worrying for Red Bull.
Starting from the first position, the Monegasque driver managed to control the race from start to finish, managing the gap with respect to Verstappen in a relatively comfortable way, who remained in second place until the moment in which his car unexpectedly left him stranded .
Without his main rival on the asphalt, the last laps were a real ride for Leclerc , who also managed to do the fastest lap to score 26 points, the most possible in a weekend with a traditional format.
Speaking about his race on the eve of the podium, the Ferrari man was pleasantly surprised by the fact that he was able to control the race more easily than expected and gave credit to an F1-75 that seems more competitive every weekend.
“It was the first race where we controlled the gap a bit. What a car! I mean, yes, of course I did a good job all weekend, but it wouldn’t have been possible without this car. This weekend, especially in race pace, we were extremely strong.”
“The tires were also very good. From the first to the last lap we managed the tires extremely well. I’m very happy.”
The only time Leclerc ‘s lead was in jeopardy was after the safety car came on, however the Monegasque put up a great defense and kept Verstappen behind.
“It was very difficult to restart the safety car, I had a lot of understeer in the last corner, and I thought: ‘wow, it’s going to be difficult to maintain the first position’, but then I managed it and after the first few corners I regained grip and rhythm. came back… It’s very incredible to win here.”
In reference to his comfortable position in the drivers’ championship after three races, where he leads with 71 points, compared to 37 for George Russell and 33 for his teammate Carlos Sainz, the #16 assured that it was still too early to talk about the title.
“Yes, well, we are only in the third race. So it is difficult to think about the championship. But to be honest, we have a very strong car and it is also very reliable, so far we have always been there at the front, so I hope that Keep it that way, then we can probably say openly that we have a real chance to win the championship.”
“Being like this obviously makes me smile after the last two years that have been very difficult for the team and obviously also for me, so it’s great to be back in this position,” concluded a Charles Leclerc who continues in a state of grace.