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Will Leclerc and Sainz conspire against Verstappen?

The Ferrari duo will be defending from Verstappen into the first corner of the Mexican Grand Prix after securing a front-row lock-out in qualifying.

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Mexico City Grand Prix polesitter Charles Leclerc has conceded he and Ferrari teammate Carlos Sainz will have to "adapt" in real-time at the start of the race to repel Max Verstappen's attack.

The Scuderia caused an upset in qualifying at the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez by securing a front-row lockout, despite Verstappen having looked to be in a position of strength across the weekend.

Dutchman Verstappen will line up third for Red Bull, a position often tipped as an advantage given the slipstream effect on the long run down to the first corner and a place he prospered from against Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas [now at Alfa Romeo] in 2021.

On whether there were any plans to work together with Sainz to keep Verstappen behind, Leclerc told media including RacingNews365.com: "It's very difficult to predict what's going to happen.

"It's basically a result of how good a start one will have and then we'll adapt.

"We won't take too many risks in between cars but apart from that, it's difficult to plan what's happening at the start. It depends if I have a good start, if I have a bad start... so difficult to plan that."

Sainz wary of 'dirty side'

Agreeing with his teammate's comments, Sainz added: "I think it's impossible to predict these things.

"The only thing I can say is I'm starting, maybe, on the dirty side, which here is quite a big difference.

"I was almost expecting Max to beat me a bit and maybe put me on P3 to have a better launch tomorrow. But even like that, I think it's impossible to say."

F1 2023 Mexican Grand Prix RN365 News dossier

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