Charles Leclerc addresses Carlos Sainz tensions

Charles Leclerc sits seven points ahead of Ferrari team-mate Carlos Sainz in the Drivers' Championship.

Charles Leclerc has revealed that one of Carlos Sainz’s greatest strengths is his “perseverance”, as well as his “work ethic”.

2023 marks Leclerc’s and Sainz’s third season as team-mates at Ferrari, with it arguably proving to be the most challenging.

Ferrari have endured a miserable first half of the season with little to write home about, apart from three podiums for Leclerc.

Sainz is yet to finish on the podium this season and hasn’t really come close to it either, with the exception being the Miami Grand Prix.

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The Spaniard would’ve been in the fight for third had he not been penalised for speeding in the pit-lane, something he took full responsibility for.

Despite having not finished on the podium, the 28-year-old had been the stronger driver at Ferrari for the bulk of the opening 12 rounds.

However, Leclerc has recently responded.

The Monegasque has claimed two podiums in the last four races, elevating him to fifth in the Drivers’ Championship.

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Leclerc finds himself seven points ahead of Sainz during the summer break, with the Spaniard occupying P7 on 92 points.

Off-circuit, the pair do appear to have a very good relationship, although the same can’t be said for on the circuit at all times.

Leclerc and Sainz have both complained about one another at times this season over the radio, with miscommunication having been a theme of Ferrari’s season.

Leclerc admits that between the two drivers is a “lot of competition”, but he stresses that he “can work well” with him.

“I can work well with Carlos, even if there is a lot of competition between us,” Leclerc told Corriere dello Sport newspaper.

When asked what Sainz’s best traits were, Leclerc said: “His work ethic and perseverance.”

How much longer the duo will both be at Ferrari remains to be seen, with Leclerc and Sainz both only being contracted until the end of 2024.

It’s been reported though, that Leclerc has signed an extension with the team, potentially taking him all the way to 2029.

Sainz on the other hand, has once again been linked to Sauber, ahead of their merge with Audi in 2026.

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Regardless of the rumours, both drivers have a lot of work to do at Ferrari until the end of 2024, with Leclerc admitting that the side “must win”.

“We cannot settle for being second or third,” Leclerc stressed. “We must win and we have to make that feasible.

“Podiums are nice, but I haven’t really enjoyed them,” he admitted.