Charles Leclerc wary of Max Verstappen’s advantage over Ferrari in Miami

Charles Leclerc claimed his third pole position of the season with a stunning lap in Miami.

Charles Leclerc is intrigued to see how Sunday’s Miami Grand Prix will play out after taking his third pole of the season in Florida.

Having looked on par with Max Verstappen throughout qualifying, Leclerc took full advantage of a mistake by the Dutchman to snatch pole away from the 24-year-old, who had initially gone fastest in Q3.

Having headed to Florida for the first time in 53 years, Formula 1 has been greeted by a tremendous atmosphere around the Hard Rock Stadium this weekend, and the Tifosi have very much followed the Scuderia from Imola to the United States this weekend.

The 24-year-old thanked the fans for the support that spurred him on to pole position.

“The fans are crazy, it’s incredible to be here in the US and to see how much the sport has grown over the past years,” he said after qualifying.

“To see so many people in the grandstands, it definitely motivates us. There are also a lot of Ferrari fans so it’s amazing.”

Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz in Miami 2022.v1

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In pursuit of second place and the fastest lap during the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix, the championship leader made a huge error that saw him end up in the wall, putting himself out of podium contention and shipping points to Red Bull.

He is adamant to put the last race behind him and convert pole position into a race win on Sunday.

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“The last weekend hasn’t been great for me, I did a mistake in the race but today went well so we’re starting on pole and we need to finish the job tomorrow,” he explained.

As has been the case in the first four rounds of the 2022 season, Honda’s power looked to have the edge over Ferrari but, incidentally, the Dutchman was quicker than both Leclerc and Carlos Sainz in the middle sector of the first run in Q3.

Nonetheless, the Ferrari’s pace in the high-speed, technical first sector still seems to be mitigated by Red Bull’s immense power unit, so Leclerc is aware that the race will be another even battle.

“They are extremely quick in a straight line, we are quick in the corners,” he said.

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“It will be a tight challenge tomorrow and hopefully we’ll come back on top.”

Ferrari’s front-row lockout this weekend is their first since the 2019 Japanese Grand Prix, 48 races ago.