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Charles Leclerc

Leclerc in firm declaration over Sainz Monza podium battle

Carlos Sainz beat teammate Charles Leclerc to third place at Monza.

Leclerc Sainz Italy 2023
To news overview © XPBimages

Charles Leclerc has asserted there was nothing amiss with his battle against Ferrari teammate Carlos Sainz during the Italian Grand Prix.

In the closing stages of the race, the duo went wheel-to-wheel for the final spot on the podium, with Leclerc trying to pass pole-sitter Sainz after Sergio Perez had passed both of them for second and broke free.

The pair managed third and fourth at the flag separated by just 0.184s as Red Bull continued its dominance of F1 with a 15th straight win and 10th on the trot for Max Verstappen.

Leclerc attempted to overtake his teammate on several occasions, with the duo even going off the track while battling, with the fight including a last lap lock-up from Leclerc at Turn 1 that nearly sent him into the back of Sainz.

Although Leclerc finished behind his teammate, he believed it was fair and clean racing from his Spanish teammate.

'What racing should be'

"I honestly really enjoyed it," he told media including RacingNews365.

"It’s probably the most enjoyable race of the season inside the helmet at least!"

Although the battle threatened to cause upset at Ferrari’s home race, Leclerc was firm that the fight is what Formula 1 should be.

"I am sure for the pits, they wouldn’t give the same answer and I'm sure some of the Tifosi maybe didn't enjoy as much as I did with Carlos," he said.

"This is exactly what racing should be. In the past with Max, I've had similar fights, with Checo it was on the limit too.

"With Carlos, it was on the limit whether it was defending or attacking and that made it really enjoyable inside the car.

"At the end of it, we maximised the team's points and the maximum result we could have done as a team."

F1 2023 Italian Grand Prix RN365 News dossier

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