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Leclerc hails first half of 2022 as his strongest ever in F1

After taking three victories in 2022, Charles Leclerc believes the first half of the season has been his "strongest in F1".

Charles Leclerc believes the first half of his 2022 season was his "strongest in F1" after taking three victories. The Ferrari driver is currently the closest challenger to championship leader Max Verstappen, and is 80 points adrift of the Red Bull man. With a new generation of F1 technical regulations being introduced for this season, Ferrari and Red Bull have emerged as the two fastest teams. Ferrari and Leclerc have demonstrated impressive pace, with Leclerc taking seven pole positions and generally out-performing teammate Carlos Sainz. When asked to provide a verdict on his season so far, Leclerc was buoyed by his own performances in the first half of the year. "I really feel like this first part of the season has been my strongest in F1 and I think the way I have worked," Leclerc told BBC Sport . "The way we have worked as a team – in terms of finding the right set-up, in terms of building up to the qualifying lap in Q3, or just preparing the race – has been the best I have ever done in F1."

Leclerc: Despite mistakes, my approach doesn't need to change

Ferrari and Leclerc's championship challenges have been overshadowed by missed victory opportunities. There have been technical issues for Ferrari, along with grid penalties and tactical errors which have cost Leclerc and Sainz points. Leclerc has also made costly mistakes; he spun out of podium contention at Imola and crashed out of the French Grand Prix whilst leading. However, the Monegasque driver believes that the evidence of his pace means his overall approach does not have to change. "There is no need for me to change that approach," added Leclerc. "Again, try and grow from the mistakes of the first half, but try and perform as well as the first half, because the performance I've given, I'm extremely happy about. And this I want to keep. "So there won't be any significant change. We just need to try and work as a team to put a weekend together for the nine remaining races and see where we end up."

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