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Charles Leclerc

Leclerc doesn't care about Verstappen: 'I only look at Mercedes'

Having yet to win a race in the 2023 season, Charles Leclerc has one final chance in the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. But the Ferrari driver has set his sights on another important battle.

Leclerc Abu Dhabi
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To news overview © XPBimages

Charles Leclerc has set his sights on beating Mercedes in the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, as the battle for second in the Constructors' Championship ramps up.

Ferrari is just four points away from the Silver Arrows, with both teams having cars starting outside of the points.

As it stands, if they finish in the current order Ferrari would secure second. But with 58 laps still yet to be completed, there is still all to play for as Carlos Sainz recovers from P16 on the grid and Lewis Hamilton fights back into the points from P11.

When asked about his approach to the race, Leclerc told media, including RacingNews365: "The only thing that matters to me is that we challenge the Mercedes and that we take the second place in the Constructors’ Championship.

"Because in the Drivers’, honestly finishing fourth, fifth, sixth or seventh in the Drivers’, I don't care. But second in the Constructors’ would be nice. So we just need to beat the Mercedes."

Leclerc: If there is an opportunity to beat Max, I'll take it

Leclerc has yet to win a race in F1 since the Austrian Grand Prix in 2022, with Sainz being the only driver other than Verstappen or Sergio Perez to win in 2023.

Despite starting alongside Verstappen on the grid, Leclerc is focused on one goal.

"If there's an opportunity to beat Max, I'll take it," said Leclerc.

"However, on a track like this, with hot conditions like this, I expect us to struggle a bit more than Las Vegas, than what we've seen in Vegas on race pace.

"We've been good with the tyre management in Vegas in very different conditions. In FP3, I had quite a good feeling during the race simulations, so I hope we can reproduce that."

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F1 2023 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix RN365 News dossier

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