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Leclerc fires Ferrari Red Bull warning despite Azerbaijan GP pole

Charles Leclerc claimed a first Pole Position of the season in qualifying for Sunday's Azerbaijan Grand Prix - beating Max Verstappen.

Charles Leclerc has warned his Ferrari team that Red Bull are still favourites for the Azerbaijan Grand Prix, despite his Formula 1 Pole Position. Leclerc set a 1:40.203s on his second run in Q3, to improve by 0.242s on his first effort - which was the exact same time as Red Bull's Max Verstappen, who had set it earlier. Verstappen only shaved off 0.188s on his second effort to line up P2, but the Ferrari has been weaker in race pace than the RB19, which enjoys significant straight line speed. And Leclerc was wary of that fact after claiming pole in Baku for the third straight season.

Leclerc's warning to Ferrari

"We came into the weekend thinking it would be great if we were ahead of Mercedes and Aston Martin in qualifying and at the end, we are on pole, so it is surprise," he explained after claiming his first pole of the season. "We must not forget that our race car is maybe still behind the Red Bull so it will be difficult to keep the lead [during Sunday's race.] "That is the target and I'm really, really happy with the lap. "It's a very challenging weekend for us drivers, because we had very little time to practice, we only done FP1 and then you need to be straight on it, but the feeling was good from the start." Leclerc also noted the sprint shootout qualifying tomorrow morning would be "challenging" as drivers hadn't run the medium tyres yet, adding there was "no room for mistakes" in the new session which will form the grid for tomorrow's standalone sprint race.

RESULTS 2024 F1 Monaco Grand Prix - Free Practice 2