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Frederic Vasseur

Vasseur did not expect Mexico pole after Ferrari setback

The Ferrari Team Principal was surprised to see Charles Leclerc at the top of the timesheet after a difficult FP3.

Vasseur Ferrari Spain
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Ferrari Team Principal Frederic Vasseur did not expect to take pole for the Mexico City Grand Prix, following the team's setback during final practice.

Charles Leclerc set a 1:17.166s which was 0.067s quicker than team-mate Carlos Sainz, and a further 0.097s faster than Max Verstappen.

Both Ferrari drivers had to abort their runs on the Soft tyre during FP3 when they hit traffic, with Sainz getting close to colliding with Lance Stroll while Kevin Magnussen brought about an abort of Leclerc's attempt.

This meant that both went into qualifying without a representative time on the Softs, however on the new sets of C5 Pirellis, they managed to beat Verstappen who had topped every practice session and Q1.

Vasseur: We will have to manage the race

Neither Leclerc or Vasseur expected to achieve the pole, however the Ferrari Team Principal was optimistic about their chances in the race.

"I was strangely quite optimistic after FP3 because when we had to abort the lap we had a good pace before, but we didn't know how would we survive in Sector 3," Vasseur told Sky Sports.

"I was quite optimistic, but not like this [for pole]."

Vasseur expects it to be a tough race for their drivers to manage, with the long run into Turn 1 to be a key moment for Leclerc.

He added: "We will have to manage the race. We know that it's a really long run to Turn 1 and the slipstream is important, but I prefer to start from the pole."

F1 2023 Mexican Grand Prix RN365 News dossier

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