Charles Leclerc is keeping his feet firmly on the ground despite the Monegasque racer claiming his maiden Formula 1 pole position during Qualifying for the Bahrain Grand Prix on Saturday.
Scuderia Ferrari have shown themselves to be the team to beat all weekend long, with Leclerc topping two of the three practice sessions ahead of Saturday’s Qualifying, and he translated that into a strong performance throughout all three parts of the session, topping each one.
His final lap during Q3 broke the lap record around the Sakhir International Circuit after his first effort had equalled that of team-mate Sebastian Vettel, set twelve months ago, with Leclerc pleased to show what he was capable of after a relatively lacklustre start to the year for the whole team in Australia two weeks ago.
“This first pole position brings me a lot of emotions, even if I’m trying to stay as cool as possible, as there are no points for pole position and the race is tomorrow,” said Leclerc. “It has been a great day and a great weekend overall for the team so far, so I hope it will continue tomorrow.
“I said it was a question of putting everything together for qualifying and it seems I did it, unlike what happened in the first race.”
Leclerc hopes to be able to convert his maiden pole position into a maiden victory, with the twenty-one-year-old revealing he is feeling more and more at home behind the wheel of the SF90 with every passing lap.
“It’s an amazing feeling but now we have to focus on the race and try to bring home the best possible result tomorrow,” said the Monegasque, a winner in Bahrain during his FIA Formula 2 championship winning season of 2017. “I feel more comfortable in the car lap after lap so I’m satisfied.
“Before the race we will talk with the team to find the perfect strategy in order to give the Scuderia the best possible result. The start will probably be the key as the track is dirty and it’s easy to have wheelspin.”