Leclerc was perfect, says Binotto

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After securing the Scuderia’s second podium finish in 2020, Ferrari Team Principal Mattia Binotto labelled Charles Leclerc’s performance as perfect at the British Grand Prix.

Ferrari experienced a resurgence at the British Grand Prix thanks to Charles Leclerc's flawless performances in the qualifying session and the race. The Scuderia has been struggling for pace since the beginning of the delayed season due to its underpowered engine and slipped down the pecking order.

However, Leclerc put in a masterful performance both on Saturday and Sunday and with the late-race tyre drama for Valtteri Bottas, the Monegasque came in third in the otherwise Mercedes-dominated grand prix.

"Mixed fortunes today. On the plus side is Charles' podium finish. After a good qualifying yesterday, he was perfect in the race, doing an impeccable job of managing the tyres. On the minus side, is Sebastian’s result. Again today, he was clearly not happy with his car: we have to study the data closely to work out why."

The early races clearly showed that Ferrari’s SF1000 lost its straight-line speed advantage it had last year. As drivers spend almost 80 per cent of lap at Silverstone at full throttle, the Scuderia followed an ambitious approach for the fourth round of the season, bringing an extremely low-downforce rear wing. Binotto has revealed that the aggressive setup direction was the result of a successful simulation work back at the Maranello factory.

„We had prepared carefully for this weekend, going for a lower than usual aerodynamic downforce configuration, based on simulation work and development in the wind tunnel and it paid off. We also worked a lot on tyre management, which was a critical factor in this race, as can be seen from the last few laps. Charles did a good job, patiently listening to the engineers, saving the tyres for the entire race.”

Despite the encouraging result from Leclerc, the SF1000 was 1.2 second off Lewis Hamilton’s best lap time with which the Briton secured the pole position while the Italians’ car’s performance was roughly 1.5 seconds per lap behind the pace-setting Mercedes’s race pace. Binotto is therefore aware of the fact that his team has to make big strides to trim down the deficit to the field-leading dominant Mercedes.

„Today, at least with one car, we got everything out of the package we have, even though it’s a long way off our target. Now we are focussing on next weekend, when we race again on the same track. We will prepare well and try as hard as possible to bring home even more points than today,” said Binotto