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Charles Leclerc

Leclerc: Uncertainty key in Ferrari Las Vegas gamble

Charles Leclerc banked another podium for Ferrari in Las Vegas but was unable to convert into a win as he passed Sergio Perez on the final lap.

Charles Leclerc has detailed how uncertainty from Ferrari was key in its decision not to pit under the second Las Vegas Grand Prix Safety Car.

After contact between Max Verstappen and George Russell at Turn 12, the Safety Car was deployed for debris on Lap 26 of 50.

Both Sergio Perez who had cycled to the lead and Verstappen pitted for fresh tyres, while Leclerc who had just stopped, did not come back in.

Perez got past into the lead after the restart but Leclerc quickly came back past for the lead, but was unable to defend against the charging Verstappen - who had earned a five-second penalty for his move at Turn 1.

On the final lap, Leclerc divebombed Perez into Turn 14 at the end of the Strip to mug the Red Bull for second place and aid Ferrari's push for second in the Constructors' - now just four points behind Mercedes.

"What a race, honestly, I enjoyed it so much, and of course, I am disappointed to only finish second, but at the end, it was the best we could do," Leclerc explained.

"At the start it was very tricky because Max was on the inside with the grip and I was on the outside, but then we had the pace and passed him back, and we were really strong overall.

"We got a bit unlucky with the Safety Car, we didn't pit because we didn't know what the others would do.

"We went for track position, and keeping first place with the older tyres was difficult, but we got second place.

"Of course the weekend didn't start well, but I'm happy it ended that way.

"There was no better race for the first in Vegas - the energy around the city is incredible and I'm really, really happy."

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