Even though Ferrari got the fastest time in FP2, Leclerc believes qualifying will be difficult.
As a result of the close timings in Friday practise, which put the top 5 drivers within three tenths of one another, Charles Leclerc predicts that qualifying for the Dutch Grand Prix will be “challenging.”
Lewis Hamilton in the Mercedes was only 0.072 seconds faster than Leclerc, who set the quickest time of 1:12.354 to win FP2. Lando Norris finished fifth fastest for McLaren.
Leclerc said he still has problems with his car’s balance and is trying to gain more time, even though Ferrari was battling Red Bull, as the squad had anticipated going into this weekend.
“At the end we are all extremely close. It’s going to be a tricky day tomorrow but we are looking at doing another step forward,” he told media.
“I wasn’t much at ease with the car balance today, so hopefully we can work in the right direction and do another step tomorrow.”
Leclerc anticipating “very little” overtaking in the race
As he thinks overtaking on Sunday may be challenging, the Ferrari racer says the team is focusing more on their cornering speeds than their straight-line speeds.
He added: “In general the balance was really tricky, quite a lot of understeer, trying to rotate the car, then at the exit it makes it quite snappy because I didn’t rotate the car enough through the corner. So we need to work on that.”
“I think the corners are the one we are targeting to make right because the straights are not so much [an issue], and overtaking in the race will be very little. So we will be pushing for qualifying.”
In an effort to ease overtaking, F1 has extended the DRS activation zone to 40 metres following Turn 13. This allows the racers to open the flap earlier as they go through the banked section.
Carlos Sainz, Charles Leclerc, F1, F1 2022, Ferrari, FIA, Formula 1, Grand Prix, Scuderia, Dutch GP