During Saturday’s sprint at the Azerbaijan Grand Prix, Ferrari driver Charles Leclerc caused a stir by mentioning a “cut” to the power unit over the team radio, which was displayed on television with an on-screen graphic. However, Leclerc later clarified that he was actually reporting a cat that had run across the path of the safety car, causing it to briefly brake. Leclerc joked that he was probably the only one who saw the feline interloper, and stressed that there would be no further issues with the power unit.
Despite starting on pole both for the sprint and the grand prix, Leclerc ultimately finished fourth in the race. He explained that Ferrari had taken another step forward from its performance at the Australian Grand Prix, where it had found a breakthrough in set-up. However, Leclerc conceded that the team is still lacking pace during the races and needs to “find something”. He added that the team is working on improving its performance during the races while maintaining its solid qualifying performances.
Once Red Bull driver Sergio Perez was able to make use of DRS, Leclerc fell behind him and struggled to keep up with the pace. Leclerc admitted that Ferrari still has some work to do to match Red Bull‘s level, but he was pleased with the improvements made to the car. However, as the tyre degradation increased, Leclerc struggled to hold off Perez and was overtaken by Max Verstappen as well, leaving him with a disadvantage for the remainder of the race. Overall, Leclerc remains optimistic that Ferrari can improve its race pace and fight for better results in the future.