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Re-contract with Ferrari: can Charles Leclerc Wearing Red Beat Verstappen?

Revving up for another chapter in the Formula 1 saga, Charles Leclerc and Ferrari declared their ongoing partnership, shattering the rumours that had lingered like pit lane whispers. 

Charles has clearly been more than ready to take on Max Verstappen for the world championship only to be foiled time and time again by engineering short-falls relative to the superb Red Bull bollide of the Dutchman. And then there have been several misjudged strategic calls by the Prancing Horse team during critical moments in key races in 2023. 

But this dynamic duo of the Monégasque and Ferrari, who are bound by a contract until the twilight of the 2024 season, aren’t  ready to give up taking many more checkered flags together just yet.

In the realm of Ferrari’s scarlet-clad legacy, Charles Leclerc has been a driving force since his induction in 2019. Despite the persistent speculations surrounding his future, the curtain has just fallen to dispel the suspense. A synchronized duet on social media platforms echoed the affirmation – Ferrari and Leclerc are in it for several more seasons.

The official announcement, a digital symphony, resonated, “Scuderia Ferrari is thrilled to extend its pact with Charles Leclerc, ensuring his presence in the Formula 1 World Championship beyond the 2024 season.” 

Leclerc, basking in the news, is clearly elated at donning the Scuderia Ferrari race suit for several more seasons to come. The exact timeline of this renewed commitment remains veiled in Maranello mystery. Behind the scenes he must be pushing hard at Ferrari engineers to catch up to Red Bull’s pre-eminence. If he is to win his home Grand Prix in Monaco and indeed the World Championship, driving talent alone will not do it. He needs a competitive racing car. So the multi-million dollar question is can Ferrari deliver both in terms of engineering and with flawless strategic calls? When to pit, choice of tyres, team support everything has to come together to beat Red Bull and a resurgent Mercedes with 7 time world champion Lewis Hamilton at the wheel, not to mention McLaren and Aston Martin. 

As we recalibrate our expectations for the asphalt ballet, Leclerc reflects on five years, 103 races, and a podium dance with 30 finishes, including five victories. A proud product of Ferrari, his aspiration remains unbridled – to return Maranello to the zenith of the World Championship, a glory untasted since 2007. Leclerc, with the zeal of a speed virtuoso, declares, the best is yet to come. This team is his second family since joining the Ferrari Driver Academy in 2016, and together, they weathered storms and celebrated victories. But the crescendo is on the horizon.

Amid the roar of engines and dreams hurtling down the straightaway, Frédéric Vasseur, the maestro behind the scenes, echoes Leclerc’s melody, that his values are entwined with Ferrari’s , a natural synergy that propels the Prancing Horse team into the future. Vasseur is determined to realize Ferrari’s commitment to engineer a competitive car for Charles.

Before the tyre rubber meets the Bahrain tarmac in March, Ferrari will unveil its latest creation on February 13th before the high-octane races commence. Last year’s spectacle at Fiorano Modenese, Ferrari’s private theatre near Maranello, will undoubtedly inspire anticipation for the next act. The track awaits, and the red stallion is poised to take Leclerc to the pinnacle. Go Charles!

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