Leclerc forced to stop during filming day, but reliability issue not to blame

Ferrari have been doing some filming in Monza this week.

Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc gave fans a bit of a scare when he ground to a halt during the team’s filming day in Monza, but fears have been allayed that it had anything to do with reliability issues.

It had already been reported that the new engine Ferrari have installed on to Leclerc’s car and that of Carlos Sainz was allowed to be upgraded because of reliability concerns, and they headed to the Autodromo Nazionale Monza for a filming day.

They chose this week to conduct the running because it gave them a chance to try out the upgrades they are going to bring to the Spanish Grand Prix next weekend, which reportedly include revised wings and sidepods as they seek to lose weight and streamline the F1-75 on the straights.

READ: Newey doesn’t agree that ‘things are looking pretty good’ for Verstappen and Red Bull

They are reportedly set to drop by 2kg and gain three tenths of a second on Red Bull, and they will have corroborated some of their own estimations in Monza.

Leclerc was sent out for some short stints followed by long periods in the garage, and report that the Monegasque completed 17 laps, but article 10.4 of the sporting regulations dictate that running “must not exceed 100km” during a “promotional event.”

Had Leclerc completed the lap that he was on, he would have exceeded that, so he had to stop before they contravened the regulation.

“There was a rumour that the red car had suffered electrical problems with the 066/7 power unit, as the F1-75 stalled at the end of the straight, just before the Variante and then was not restarted,” said the report.

“Ferrari tried to choose a date for the filming day that was also functional to the debut of the first developments of the F1-75 that will debut at the next Spanish GP.”

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Having watched Max Verstappen win the last two races as a result of the upgrade Red Bull introduced at the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix, Ferrari boss Mattia Binotto confirmed that it is “our turn” to make some influential changes to the car.

“In the next races it will be at least our turn to try to develop as much as we can the car by introducing upgrades,” he said.

READ: Carlos Sainz wants ‘unique’ Spanish GP victory

“I think it’s not a surprise that we may have a package in Barcelona which will be important for us.”

Verstappen and Leclerc have won all of the first five races of the season between them, and the Monegasque leads the standings by 19 points after reliability failures for the reigning champion in Bahrain and Australia.