Leclerc feeling "quite shit" as he waits on F1 gearbox inspection

Charles Leclerc says he feels "quite shit" after topping Formula 1 qualifying for the eighth time, due to the circumstances of his Q3 crash at the 2021 Monaco Grand Prix.

Leclerc feeling "quite shit" as he waits on F1 gearbox inspection

Leclerc crashed at the second part of the Swimming Pool sequence on a flying lap with just few seconds of qualifying remaining, clipping the barriers on the inside of the first apex and breaking the suspension at the right-front of his car.

The initial impact and damage sent him across the kerbs of the second apex and into the barriers on the outside, where he also suffered significant damage to the rear of his SF21.

After the resulting red flags ended the session early, Leclerc's qualifying P1 was confirmed after he had led the Q3 runners through the opening runs – although he now waits on Ferrari discovering the details of the damage and finding out if he must take a new gearbox ahead of the Monaco race, which would result in a grid penalty.

After climbing from his car, Leclerc told F1 television "it doesn't feel the same" compared to the joy of usually taking pole.

When asked by Autosport to explain how he was feeling once the initial post-qualifying period had passed, Leclerc replied: "For now, it feels quite shit, to be honest.

"I'm just waiting for the gearbox and that's it. For now, I can't enjoy that quali as I would like to."

Charles Leclerc, Ferrari SF21 crashes

Charles Leclerc, Ferrari SF21 crashes

Photo by: Glenn Dunbar / Motorsport Images

Leclerc, who he said he had heard "nothing" by way of an update regarding the damage done to his car at the time he was speaking in the Monaco paddock, also responded to questions from reporters regarding suggestions that his crash had been done deliberately, which he rebuffed.

"I think Valtteri and Max [third and second in qualifying] were actually speaking about that in the press conference together. I think they hadn't seen the images before thinking it was on purpose.

"I'm pretty sure that once they'd seen the images… I can tell you that if it was done on purpose, I would have done it a lot more cleverly and not gone at full speed into [the barrier] and risking breaking the gearbox.

"So, no, it was definitely not on purpose."

Leclerc also explained that his final Q3 lap "didn't start great" and that "in the last sector I tried to push a bit more".

He added: "I had gained a little bit at the beginning of it, but then lost it all with the crash.

"So, yeah, it's like this. I went for it at the end. It's one of my strengths sometimes and it's why sometimes I am good in qualifying. It's also why I've done this mistake today.

"Whether this will make me change the approach for all the races to come, no, because at the end I had to go for it.

"But, it will be hard one to take if we have to change the gearbox."

shares
comments

Related video

Sainz "not happy at all" to lose F1 Monaco GP pole opportunity

Previous article

Sainz "not happy at all" to lose F1 Monaco GP pole opportunity

Next article

Hamilton to have "tough discussions" with Mercedes after Monaco GP qualifying

Hamilton to have "tough discussions" with Mercedes after Monaco GP qualifying
Load comments
The squandered potential of a 70s F1 underdog Plus

The squandered potential of a 70s F1 underdog

A podium finisher in its first outing but then never again, the BRM P201 was a classic case of an opportunity squandered by disorganisation and complacency, says STUART CODLING

Formula 1
Sep 18, 2021
The other notable Monza escape that F1 should learn from Plus

The other notable Monza escape that F1 should learn from

OPINION: The headlines were dominated by the Italian Grand Prix crash between Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton, who had the halo to thank for avoiding potentially serious injury. But two days earlier, Formula 1 had a lucky escape with a Monza pitlane incident that could also have had grave consequences

Formula 1
Sep 17, 2021
How Monza only added more questions to F1's sprint race conundrum Plus

How Monza only added more questions to F1's sprint race conundrum

With two sprint races under its belt, Formula 1 must now consider its options for them going forward. While they've helped deliver exciting racing on Sundays, the sprints themselves have been somewhat lacking - creating yet another conundrum for F1 to solve...

Formula 1
Sep 16, 2021
Who should Alfa Romeo sign for 2022's F1 season? Plus

Who should Alfa Romeo sign for 2022's F1 season?

OPINION: With Valtteri Bottas already signed up for 2022, all eyes are on the race for the second seat at Alfa Romeo next year. Antonio Giovinazzi is the current incumbent, but faces a tough competition from appealing short and long-term prospects

Formula 1
Sep 15, 2021
The "forced break" that was key to Ricciardo's Monza excellence Plus

The "forced break" that was key to Ricciardo's Monza excellence

OPINION: Daniel Ricciardo has long been considered one of Formula 1’s elite drivers. But his struggles at McLaren since switching from Renault for 2021 have been painful to watch at times. Yet he’s recovered to banish those memories with a famous Monza win – built on a critically important foundation

Formula 1
Sep 14, 2021
How Verstappen is ruining his F1 title battle with Hamilton Plus

How Verstappen is ruining his F1 title battle with Hamilton

OPINION: The Italian GP clash between Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen followed a running theme in the 2021 Formula 1 title fight. Their close-quarters battles have often resulted in contact - and although Hamilton has shown a willingness to back off, Verstappen must learn to temper his aggression

Formula 1
Sep 14, 2021
Italian Grand Prix Driver Ratings Plus

Italian Grand Prix Driver Ratings

Two drivers produced maximum-score performances as, for the second year in a row, Monza threw up an unpredictable result that left several others ruing what might have been

Formula 1
Sep 13, 2021
Why Ricciardo was set for Monza F1 triumph even without Verstappen/Hamilton crash Plus

Why Ricciardo was set for Monza F1 triumph even without Verstappen/Hamilton crash

The clash between Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton was the major flashpoint the 2021 Italian Grand Prix will be remembered for. Yet by this point, race leader Daniel Ricciardo had already done the hard work that would put him in position to end his and McLaren's lengthy win droughts, on a memorable afternoon in Monza

Formula 1
Sep 13, 2021