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today is Jan 31, 2023

Charles Leclerc is confident the problems behind his poor Mexican Grand Prix will not recur in the final races of 2022.

The Ferrari driver finished sixth, the last driver on the lead lap, 68 seconds behind race winner Max Verstappen yesterday. He grappled with an ill-handling car and erratic power delivery in qualifying, problems which were only partially addressed in the race.

“On my side, we had a few problems in qualifying, I think we could have been closer,” Leclerc explained. “But in the race, the DRS problem was fixed, we changed the rear wing. And then about the engine, we still had some problems.

“But it definitely doesn’t explain the gap that we are seeing now. So we need to work on it and try to make in order that whenever we have our bad days that they are not as bad as this one.”

Both drivers reported the car’s performance seemed to suffer more from the high altitude and thin air of the Mexico City track than their rivals. Other problems that were specific to Leclerc’s car “should be a one-off just for here,” he said. “So hopefully for the next race I’ll be back with everything normal.”

Leclerc admitted the grand prix proved even tougher for Ferrari than he expected. “Coming into the race, as much as I am optimistic every time I’m going into a race, today I knew it was going to be difficult,” he said. “I did not expect it to be that difficult though and going to be that much away from the guys in front.”

But he sees good reason to expect better things from the season-ending races in Brazil and Abu Dhabi.

“I hope it won’t be worse than this because I don’t expect any race worse than this,” he said. “It’s probably one of the worst races together with Spa, this one.

“But I honestly believe that it is a one-off. For the future we need to understand what do we can do in those conditions for us to be better.”

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