Charles Leclerc believes the filming day Ferrari conducted at Mugello back in June allowed him to get up to speed quickly in Friday practice for the Tuscan Grand Prix.
After two dismal performances at Spa-Francorchamps and Monza from Ferrari, it looked to have found an upturn in form at Mugello where it celebrates its 1000th grand prix with Leclerc ending FP1 in third place.
Leclerc didn’t fare as well in FP2, ending the day in tenth place behind the Ferrari-powered Alfa Romeo of Kimi Raikkonen.
Leclerc felt “it was [a] positive” day but the result in first practice wasn’t a true representation of where Ferrari is currently due to the previous track time he had at Mugello.
“Yes it was positive on the other hand when it is going positive we need to understand why and to be honest it was a bit of a surprise for everyone,” Leclerc said. “I have my personal opinion, we have done a filming day which helped get into the rhythm of the track whereas for the others it was new track, maybe this helped us a little bit, but in FP2 it was more where we expected to be, but I think it is all very close and we can do a positive step for tomorrow, so I have some optimism.”
Sebastian Vettel ended the second session in 12th, before suffering some sort of failure at the end of the session.
Reflecting on Friday practice, he said: “Yeah it’s quite a handful for us. It’s a nice track, nice scenery, you enjoy that a lot. Obviously it’s quite brutal on tyres so you get one lap and then it’s quite different after that but it’s definitely fun to drive.
“I think we can make it better. But it will be a fight. Obviously it’s quite, yeah, tough circuit in terms of needing the balance you would like from the car but I’m sure we’ll find some small bits.”