Charles Leclerc is Max Verstappen’s title rival, but is currently 80 points behind the Dutchman. The battle has not led to any controversial moments or crashes between the Ferrari and Red Bull Racing driver all season and the Monegasque knows why.
Leclerc highlights difference with Hamilton
The 2022 title race is still very much at peace after twelve races compared to last year’s title fight between Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton. Both Leclerc and Verstappen have had a lead in the standings this season, but the drivers have not been very close for several races in a row. The main reason for this is that problems have cropped up at both Red Bull and Ferrari, often allowing the drivers to make big strides against each other in the standings.
Leclerc’s personal mistakes also contribute to his large deficit. The Monegasque is very self-conscious about that. According to Leclerc, the fact that the gaps between Verstappen and the Ferrari driver in the championship were always large is the reason why the title battle has not yet escalated. To the BBC Leclerc said: “It depends how far your opponent is willing to go. This year it was like either I had a lead and didn’t take the risk, or he had a lead and didn’t take the risk. Or I didn’t want to take a risk because I have a lot of points to make up.”
Leclerc does not rule out escalation with Verstappen
Leclerc does not rule out that the battle between the two could escalate this year as it did last year between Verstappen and Hamilton: “The title battle last year was much more prone to such things, because it was so close until the end of the year. I think we would have had the same kind of battle if it had been this close all year. If our chances are not already gone, maybe we will see that at the end of the year.”