FLASH: Charles Leclerc determined to win the race after taking Austria Pole Saturday afternoon at the Red Bull Ring.
Ferrari’s (NYSE:RACE) Charles Leclerc has called the Red Bull Ring his favorite track. Now he is looking to take the Chequered flag Sunday after taking his 2nd career pole.
There were scenes of giubilo in Ferrari garage when Mr. Leclerc’s Pole and a new lap record were confirmed.
“The car felt amazing actually,” said Mr. Leclerc. “In FP1 I struggled a little bit but then we did some changes and from FP2 it was quite good and a big pleasure to drive this car on the limit. It just felt great and I am very happy to bring the Pole position back home, but tomorrow we need to finish the job.
“We changed the car a bit for the first lap in Q3. I knew it would be a compromise for the first sector but it helped in the third sector, which is nice to see.”
Ferrari’s race pace Friday looked very competitive, which may explain why they have opted to start the race on the soft rubber, while rivals MercedesAMG and Red Bull Racing have gone for the mediums. Mr. Leclerc says he’s confident in his team’s decision to run the softs.
“We did some analysis after FP2, like every team, and the softs looked pretty good so we’re pretty happy with our strategy,” he said. “It’s different to Mercedes and Red Bull. Tomorrow will tell if it’s the right choice but I am happy with it.
“We are pretty happy, we are quite competitive this weekend. The start is important and yes there’s a long straight after it but usually we are pretty good on straights, so hopefully we can keep our position on the first three corners.”
Both of Mr. Leclerc’s laps in Q3 were quick enough for the Pole position, with his performance coming after he revealed Thursday how he has made tweaks to his qualifying strategy in a bid to carry his practice pace into a better grid slot.
The Scuderia tested a series of parts 1st introduced in France during Friday’s practice sessions in Austria, with the team believed to have made some progress in their understanding.
The circuit naturally suits Ferrari’s SF90, particularly the long straights that play to their power unit advantage, so while Leclerc was pleased they had made steps forward, he is unsure if that will transfer to future circuits.
“Our main issue in the last few Grands Prix was the front [end], we didn’t have enough front [end],” he said. “This weekend it was quite a bit better. We tried different set-up philosophies and it seemed to be a bit better.
“It does not mean it will be a big step up for other races but it seemed to work here.”
This is Mr. Leclerc’s 2nd career Pole and Ferrari’s 1st in Austria since Y 2003, when Michael Schumacher took P1, then he followed up with victory the next day.
The Big Q: Can Charles Leclerc do the same?
The Big A: Let’s watch the race and see.
Here is how they lineup on the Grid Sunday
Ferrari is the Aristocrat of the automotive sector.
The iconic Italian Supercar manufacturer claimed the title according to the latest Brand Finance Global 500 2019 report launched at the World Economic Forum in Davos.
HeffX-LTN overall technical outlook for RACE is Very Bullish, overhead resistance now stands at 165.25, and support at 160.01, all Key indicators are still Very Bullish in here. Ferrari finished at 161.42, +0.56 Friday in NY.
Tune in for the Austria GP this weekend.
This weekend’s Austrian Grand Prix is set to get underway Sunday at 14:10p BST and 9:10a EDT.
For US viewers, all of this weekend’s sessions are live on ESPN:
Sunday — Race
Pit Lane Live – Sunday, June 30, 7:30 a.m. – ESPN3
On The Grid – Sunday, June 30, 8:30 a.m. – ESPN
Race – Sunday, June 30, 9:05 a.m. – ESPN
UK viewers can watch every session live on Sky Sports F1. Check local listings for all other territories.
Tune in and enjoy the racing.