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Charles Leclerc Needs to ”Keep Pushing” as He Stands 4 Seconds Off-Target in China

Sabyasachi Biswas

Charles Leclerc Needs to ”Keep Pushing” as He Stands 4 Seconds Off-Target in China

As Formula 1 arrived in Shanghai for the 2024 Chinese GP, Charles Leclerc is all set to take to the track for the third time in his career. Prior to that, Leclerc and his teammate Carlos Sainz have done their bit to carry out some practice laps together, and the outcome? The Monegasque stands four seconds off his target!

Leclerc and Sainz paired up together in the simulator, taking all tight and wide lines and talking about the track where they hadn’t been in the past five years. As seen in Scuderia Ferrari‘s recent video, Sainz asked his teammate to keep pushing as he elaborated on the nitty-gritty of the turns at the Shanghai International Circuit.

You remember turn one right?” asked Sainz to Leclerc. “I love turn one,” replied the latter. “It’s never-ending. Infinite turn one…” Following this, the duo discussed how one loves different turns of the track and the other doesn’t.

The Shanghai International Circuit sports two long straights between turns 16 and 01 and 13 and 14. However, the 0.727-mile-long gap between turn 13 and 14 is what Leclerc absolutely loves, and this, indeed, is one of the iconic features of the track.

Leclerc finished the lap in 1:37.100, which as per Leclerc and Sainz was around “four seconds” slower than what Ferrari did in China last time. However, that year’s fastest lap went to Pierre Gasly, back when he was at Red Bull, who recorded 1:34.742. Therefore, Leclerc is exactly not four seconds away.

However, this lap by the Monegasque prompted Sainz to advise his teammate to “keep pushing man”. Formula 1 returns to China for the first time in five years, after the FIA canceled all its previous races in 2020, 2021, 2022 and 2023 due to the Coronavirus restrictions imposed by the country.

Where does Ferrari stand ahead of the Chinese GP?

Going by the current trend of performances, Ferrari are in a better position after four races than they were in 2023. With a much improved challenger, which is better in terms of straight-line speed, race pace and less tire degradation, they are one of the contenders for the win at the upcoming Chinese GP.

Furthermore, Ferrari are all set to bring massive upgrades to their air inlets and wing specifications in the upcoming races, mainly during the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix in Imola. Prior to this, they made small aerodynamics development in Suzuka.

Despite such improvements, the Italian outfit are still the second-best team after Red Bull. Whereas, the Austrian team are reigning champions of the sport and are still the team to beat as F1 arrived in the third year of its regulations.

However, Max Verstappen and Co. would not rest easy given how the Maranello-based team progressed this season. All in all, Red Bull would want to keep their dominance intact when they venture into the Shanghai International Circuit for the first time since 2019.

Post Edited By:Tanish Chachra

About the author

Sabyasachi Biswas

Sabyasachi Biswas


Sabyasachi Biswas is an F1 journalist at The SportsRush. With over one and a half decades of love for the sport and five years of experience in the field, he dreams to be a regular at the paddock when the lights go out. A Red Bull fan and F1 fan in general over the years, he enjoyed watching Felipe Massa, Sebastian Vettel, and Max Verstappen dominate the track. Apart from F1, he's also a big-time Madridista and Federer fanatic. He was a sub-junior level footballer, won inter-district quizzes and debate competitions back in school. A travel freak throughout, he tries different cuisines and learns new cultures whenever he's away from the keyboard.

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