Charles Leclerc has branded Red Bull as being “on another planet” despite setting a lap that was within two tenths of Sergio Perez in Saudi Arabian Grand Prix qualifying.
The Ferrari driver set the second fastest time in the session, but will start ten places back in 12th on the grid due to a power unit component change.
Leclerc was happy with his lap after the session, but was still cautious about Ferrari’s pace to drive through the field.
“It’s been a very difficult weekend in terms of pace for us, but I’m very happy about my lap. I think I put everything in it, it was really on the limit,” said Leclerc.
“On the other hand, Red Bull are in another planet. And we are sure we are struggling a little bit. So we need to keep pushing, but that’s what we are doing as a team.”
Red Bull will be tough to match in the race
Ferrari focused on race pace during all three practice sessions, while also electing to run low performance modes on their power unit for reliability.
Even though Max Verstappen will also start outside the top ten after a shock departure from qualifying, Leclerc still feels Red Bull will be tough to match during the race.
“The race pace looks looks quite good, but it’s very difficult to compare because in FP2 everybody has a very different programme,” he explained.
“So we will see but it seemed a little bit better. But it’s not going to be easy because I feel like everybody is very close in the race.”