Charles Leclerc: It's worrying how fast Max Verstappen is

Ferrari driver Charles Leclerc described Max Verstappen’s pace on Saturday in qualifying at the Belgian Grand Prix as ‘worrying.’

The race gets underway at 3pm local time here in Spa and it’ll be Carlos Sainz and Sergio Perez on the front row at lights out.

Their team-mates, meanwhile, occupy P14 and P15 with Max ahead of Charles as both look to surge back through the pack.

They’re so far down thanks to grid penalties caused by PU component changes, though they’re actually higher than they might have been with a number of other drivers also incurring penalties.

Max, on Saturday, meanwhile, was a class apart and would have been on pole by some margin but for the changes, which left Leclerc, among others, rather concerned at the pace he was displaying.

Speaking after quali, Leclerc said:

“There’s some potential obviously because we didn’t prepare qualifying as much as we normally do.

“But when you see the gap to Max, it’s a bit worrying. They are extremely quick, and it’s been the case since the beginning of the weekend, and we cannot explain quite why, so we need to work. We’ll try our best tomorrow, but they seem to have found something this weekend.

SPA, BELGIUM – AUGUST 26: Max Verstappen of the Netherlands driving the (1) Oracle Red Bull Racing RB18 on track during practice ahead of the F1 Grand Prix of Belgium at Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps on August 26, 2022 in Spa, Belgium. (Photo by Rudy Carezzevoli/Getty Images)

“They are way too fast, there’s nothing that we could have done.

“Or nothing that would have changed anything for our starting position tomorrow. We had to beat Max in qualifying but today the car is just not at that level.”

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