Red Bull were pushed hard by Ferrari at the Italian Grand Prix two weeks ago, with Max Verstappen taking 15 laps to power past Carlos Sainz.

Ferrari ultimately came away with a 3-4 finish on home soil - their best joint-rest of F1 2023.

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After Monza, Marko admitted he was wary of Leclerc and Ferrari in Singapore: “Like every race, we have had a competitive car everywhere so why should that not be the case in Singapore.

“But I have to say Ferrari and especially Leclerc is a specialist around there. If they are faster in qualifying, then it could become a problem for us because overtaking in Singapore is very difficult.

“But I’m still optimistic that the package we are bringing to Singapore is good enough to win.”

Leclerc was asked about Marko’s claim on Thursday in Singapore, where he replied: “It’s nice to read that but I’m not buying it at all.

“I really think that they will be the strongest this weekend, especially come race day. Quali, maybe it will be close but maybe not.

“I think on a high downforce track like here, I expect us to struggle more than Monza. I don’t think they’ll [Red Bull] will have any threats, I think they’ll just be the fastest.”