Leclerc led every lap of the British GP after title rivals Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen collided and appeared to be on course to record Ferrari’s first win in two years until he was overtaken by a recovering Hamilton three laps from the end.

Given the slow-speed strengths of Ferrari’s 2021 car, which helped Leclerc secure surprise pole positions in Monaco and Baku, the Scuderia has been tipped to mix it up with Red Bull and Mercedes once again at this weekend’s race at the Hungaroring.

But Leclerc has downplayed Ferrari’s prospects in Budapest despite its near-miss at Silverstone last time out.

“It’s good to be optimists and we all want to be optimists after such a good performance in the last three races but on the other hand, we also need to be realistic,” Leclerc said.

“Of course it’s good and we are in a good mood but I feel like going for the win in Budapest might be a bit optimistic.

“Realistically, I would be happy if we are just behind the two top teams.”

Teammate Carlos Sainz echoed Leclerc’s view, adding that the Hungaroring cannot be categorised as purely being a slow-speed circuit with the downforce levels produced by the current generation of F1 cars.

“Budapest recently has become recently a medium-to-high-speed track in these cars,” he explained.

“If you look at Monaco and Baku, there are several low-speed corners. Budapest now with these crazily high downforce cars, you have a middle sector that you are in fourth, fifth gear all the time.

“So it’s not a pure low-speed track anymore like it used to be in the past. I don’t think it’s going to be such a good track for us, but I do think that is a great opportunity to be right behind Red Bull and Mercedes.”