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Other SportsLeclerc confident Ferrari can challenge Red Bull

Leclerc confident Ferrari can challenge Red Bull

Charles Leclerc is confident Ferrari are “where they want to be” after unveiling their new SF-24 car ahead of the 2024 Formula One season.

The Italian marque finished third in the Constructor Standings last season, 454 points behind runaway leaders Red Bull.

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But there were signs the gap was closing as the season went on, particularly in qualifying.

Leclerc is optimistic Ferrari will offer a more consistent challenge in 2024. He said: “I expect the car to be a step forward in several areas.

“From the impression I have formed in the simulator, I think we’re where we want to be.

“The SF-24 ought to be less sensitive and easier to drive and that’s what you need in order to do well.

“This season the aim is to be front-runners all the time and I want to give our fans plenty to cheer about, by dedicating race wins to them.”

Carlos Sainz was the only non-Red Bull driver to win a race last season and the Spaniard, who will be replaced by Lewis Hamilton for 2025, believes the work done during the off-season will reap rewards.

Sainz said: “I’m looking forward to driving the car to see if it correlates with the feeling I had from the simulator, which is that it’s the step forward we all want.

“The aim is to have a car that’s more driveable and therefore able to run at a consistent race pace, as these are the basic requirements to fight for wins.

“We drivers have done our very best to give the engineers precise feedback and I’m sure the workforce in Maranello will have listened to our needs.”

Ferrari have “redesigned every area of the car”, according to chassis technical director Enrico Cardile.

Cardile said: “Our starting point was the development direction we adopted last year and which saw us take a leap forward in terms of competitiveness in the final part of the season.

“We have taken on board what the drivers told us and turned those ideas into engineering reality, with the aim of giving them a car that’s easier to drive and therefore easier to get the most out of and push it to its limits.”

Jon Fisher
Jon Fisher
Jon has over 20 years' experience in sports journalism having worked at the Press Association, Goal and Stats Perform, covering three World Cups, an Olympics and numerous other major sporting events.
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