It’s one thing to run after a Grand Prix victory with Lewis Hamilton straight to your rear wing, it’s another to be a Ferrari driver who does just that at Monza.
But that’s what Charles Leclerc faced last season at the Italian GP when he was trying to win a second Grand Prix.
He believes the race has been the biggest pressure he has felt all season.
Leclerc started the 2019 Italian Grand Prix, his first race at Monza as a Ferrari driver, from pole position.
He took a small lead at the start only so that Mercedes drivers from Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas closed it.
Hamilton made several attempts to overtake the Monegasque driver while Leclerc received a warning for his defense.
Despite some movements at the border, Leclerc stayed ahead of Hamilton who made a small mistake that allowed Bottas to climb to second place.
The Finn however failed to overtake Leclerc who contested his second victory of the season.
“Pressure at Monza,” he told a Q&A fan when asked about the pressure in his first season with Ferrari.
“Last year at Monza was quite tense.
“First Valtteri was right behind him, then Lewis was right behind me.
“So a lot of pressure, especially in Monza.
“The whole week was spent winning with Ferrari.
“The whole country was behind us and I felt a lot of pressure.
“It was tight in the helmet but the only thing I was telling myself was to stay calm and focus on what I needed to do in the car, which was most important in trying to bring the result home.
“We did, but there was definitely a lot of pressure.”
The Monegasque star was also asked by fans about the most important lesson he had learned in his first year with Ferrari.
He replied, “I think patience.
“Patience is something very important and with which I have struggled in the past.
“But I learned from Ferrari that I must have it.
“Obviously, you can’t have everything the right way all the time and sometimes you have to have patience to learn from the best.
“Things take time to settle, so sometimes you have to wait a bit.”
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