Leclerc pledges controlled aggression, says Ferrari support team competition - GulfToday

Leclerc pledges controlled aggression, says Ferrari support team competition

Leclerc pledges controlled aggression, says Ferrari support team competition

Ferrari driver Charles Leclerc in action during the second practice session at the Yas Marina Circuit in Abu Dhabi on Friday.

Ferrari’s battling drivers have pledged to control their aggression after crashing into each other in Brazil, Charles Leclerc said on Thursday but he also insisted that team orders would not be imposed.

The Monegasque said that he and four-time world champion Sebastian Vettel should be less aggressive and try to avoid another similar collision in the future.

The pair were summoned to ‘clear-the-air’ talks last week at Ferrari’s Maranello headquarters where they analysed the accident and reflected on the conclusions.

“We looked at it and I particularly looked at it, obviously, to try and understand how we could have made things better,” said Leclerc during a scheduled news conference ahead of the Sunday’s season-ending Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

“I think it was very unfortunate — firstly because the touch was extremely small and had a big drama after that. So that was a little bit unlucky.

“As a team, I think we probably should try to be a bit less aggressive between each other for these things to not happen again.

“For the team it is not good. For everyone that is supporting us, it’s not good. So we need to try for it to not happen again.”

Leclerc added that he did not believe that Ferrari would consider imposing team orders to stop them racing each other for position.

“I think this will not change,” he said. “We will be able to race together. Obviously, Seb and myself are very competitive.

“We both want to win, but also we need to find the right compromise. We are also racing for the same team.

“Apart from that, I don’t think there’s much we can do. As I said, the consequences were huge in the last race. If you look back at the contact, it was very, very small.

“It was unfortunate, but again we will make sure it doesn’t happen again. I think Seb should not have gone to the left — and he knows it.

“And I probably could have done a better job of avoiding him going to the left! So both of us have a bit of responsibility.

“I think the most important is that everything is clear. We have sat down and we move forward.”

Meanwhile, Canadian Nicholas Latifi said his dream had come true after the Williams announced on Thursday he would be making his Formula One debut in 2020 as Robert Kubica’s replacement.

The 24-year-old, who is second in the Formula Two feeder series with two races remaining this weekend, is already the British team’s reserve and has driven for them in six practice sessions this season.

“For me, it’s a dream come true and something I’ve been working towards for almost half my life,” Latifi said in a statement.

 “It still feels a bit surreal. I don’t think it will sink in fully until I’m on the grid in Melbourne next year.”

Latifi’s appointment alongside Mercedes-backed Briton George Russell, who made his debut this year, fills the last vacant spot on the 2020 grid.

“Nicholas has become an established and well-respected member of Williams,” deputy team principal Claire Williams said. “We look forward to him stepping up into this new role as we look to fight our way back to the midfield.”

Former world champions Williams are currently last in the overall standings.

Kubica, who made his Formula One comeback this season after a near-fatal rally crash in 2011, has scored the team’s only point.

The 34-year-old has been outperformed by Russell, however, and announced in September that he would be leaving the team.

He has been linked with a move to US-owned Haas in a reserve or simulator driver role.

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