Charles Leclerc was forced to stop after hitting the barriers during the closing stages of the Emilia-Romagna GP
Charles Leclerc believes the points lost thanks to his crash in the Emilia-Romagna GP could come back to bite him in the championship, with the Ferrari driver blaming himself for being “greedy” at Imola.
Leclerc, the title leader, looked set to finish third behind the Red Bulls of Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez on Sunday before hitting the Variante Alta pavement too hard and spinning into the barriers with 10 laps remaining.
While Leclerc did not retire from the race, he struggled with damage and dropped from third to ninth before recovering to sixth.
It was damage limitation for Leclerc, who still holds a 27-point championship lead despite Verstappen’s perfect weekend, but the Monegasque insisted he couldn’t make those kinds of ‘big mistakes’. “.
Leclerc says spin that cost him podium at Emilia-Romagna Grand Prix ‘shouldn’t happen’
“I believe the spin should not have happened today,” he said. Sky Sports F1.
“P3 was the best I could do…we didn’t have the pace for much more and I was too greedy, and I paid the price and lost seven potential points from my third square.
“It’s a shame. Seven points are precious at the end of the championship for sure, and that shouldn’t happen again.”
Hear Max Verstappen, Sergio Perez and Lando Norris react to replays of Leclerc’s crash on screen after the race
It capped a disastrous day for Ferrari, which caused Carlos Sainz to retire from the race after a collision on the first lap. Conversely, Red Bull couldn’t have had a better weekend at Imola, sealing their first double since 2016.
“It’s very, very close and I think it will be that way for the rest of the season,” Leclerc said of Ferrari vs Red Bull.
“And that’s why every little mistake…well, it’s a big mistake…but the consequence given the mistake could have been much bigger.
“It’s only seven points today and it could cost more next time, so I have to be careful of that.”
Perez reclaims second place from Leclerc after coming up against Emilia-Romagna GP
Rosberg on Leclerc and Ferrari’s ‘dark day’
Nico Rosberg, the 2016 world champion, agreed with Leclerc’s idea that he should avoid these kinds of mistakes.
“Charles…if you’re fighting for a championship against Max Verstappen, you just can’t afford to shoot there when you’re driving alone,” Rosberg said on Sky Sports F1.
Verstappen takes the lead in the Emilia-Romagna Grand Prix from the start as Carlos Sainz collides with Daniel Ricciardo and is out of the race
“Yes, he was stalking Sergio Perez but the pressure was on Perez.
“To shoot like that, my God, he has to avoid that for the rest of the season if he wants to win the championship.”
On Ferrari, Rosberg added: “They were really hoping for a win today and celebrating and it was an extremely dark day.
Sainz reflects on his collision with Ricciardo which ended his race on the first lap
“I’m glad to see Charles seemed to be on the positive side, though.
“I thought he would be more depressed…I think he’ll bounce back very quickly.”
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