Ferrari Formula 1 protege Charles Leclerc says he acknowledges the importance of making the most of his opportunities to impress the Scuderia at every opportunity.

The Sauber driver scored his first-ever points in F1 with a brilliant and opportunistic drive to sixth-place during a crazy race in Baku, having made it into Q2 for the first time this season. 

He followed that up with another Q2 appearance at the Spanish Grand Prix and went on to finish 10th in Sunday's race in Barcelona, recording Sauber's first consecutive points finishes since 2015. 

F1 Driver Ratings - Spanish GP

An impressive rookie season could tempt Ferrari to promote Leclerc into a Scuderia race seat for 2019, with Kimi Raikkonen’s contract set to expire at the end of the current campaign.

When asked by Crash.net if he feels it is important to capitalise on situations like Baku to impress Ferrari, Leclerc replied: “I think this is very important for me. But more than for Ferrari it is for me. 

“It’s what this year is about, we know that for now we don’t have the performance to fight for points every weekend but we know that when the occasion is there we need to grab it with both hands and not making any stupid errors. 

“This is what we did in Baku and I am very happy. Obviously there will be some bad races and some that are worse but this is how it is. 

“Hopefully we will have the chance to score more points throughout the season but I think it will be all about grabbing the occasion when it is there.”

But Leclerc insists he is not thinking about the prospect of a “dream” Ferrari drive at this stage and feels Sauber was the perfect place for him to begin his F1 career. 

“To be honest for now I don’t think about Ferrari, it is still so far and there is so much time. I definitely believe that Alfa Romeo Sauber is the right team for me to start with.

“I need to work and keep getting better and improving and hopefully get the opportunity to go to a bigger team and one day my final dream is to be in the red car, if this can happen it will be a dream come true.”

The Monegasque believes a tricky opening few races in 2018 proved valuable as a learning experience to spur him on to improve. 

“I think it has been very important for me to have some very difficult races at the start of the year because it has pushed me to work harder and to probably learn more than I would have had if i had an easy start to the season.”