Leclerc admits Ferrari surprise at Italian GP pole position 

Ferrari found plenty of pace as Leclerc beat out Red Bull's Max Verstappen in Qualifying


Despite claiming a dominant pole position for the 2022 Italian Grand Prix at Monza, Charles Leclerc was still a little taken aback by the pace of his Ferrari and didn’t expect to be first in Qualifying. 

Leclerc was 0.145s ahead of Max Verstappen in the Red Bull in Qualifying, though the Dutchman will have a grid penalty applied for the race and could well start as low as seventh.

“We still need to finalise this [the win] tomorrow,” Leclerc told the press. 

“Otherwise it’s pointless to [have] the pole on Saturday, but it is a very good surprise today. 

“Considering where we come from, especially in Spa. We were not expecting to fight for pole here. 

“So it’s a very good surprise at home, and it’s great that we managed to do a good job today.”

Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc poses after qualifying in pole position for 2022 Italian Grand Prix with second placed Red Bull’s Max Verstappen and third placed Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz Jr. | REUTERS/Ciro De Luca/Pool

Leclerc put Ferrari’s pace improvement down to plenty of testing and trying out different set ups on the car. 

“[In] FP1 and FP2 we tested a lot of things across [the] cars with Carlos [Sainz], lots of different things,” Leclerc stated. 

“And we found different directions that were interesting. We were really struggling a lot in Spa and we found some pace. 

“So it’s good. It shows that we worked in the right direction. And I hope that tomorrow we can show that in the race also.”

No Ferrari mistakes

There will be a slew of grid penalties at Monza and Leclerc will be on the front row of the grid for the Italian GP alongside George Russell in the Mercedes, but warned of mistakes in the race.

“I think the race pace is strong,” Leclerc continued. “The feeling was really really good. 

So, whatever happens in the first lap I think we still have the pace to win this race, and we’ll try to put everything together, no mistakes during the race and I think we can have a good Sunday.”

John Smith
John Smith
Editor at and all round Motorsport journalist specialising in Formula 1, IndyCar and Formula E.
- Advertisment -


Oliver Rowland, Sebastien Buemi and Sam Bird battle at the Misano E-Prix | Formula E

Formula E standings after 2024 Misano E-Prix

Two stunning races at the 2024 Misano E-Prix reshaped the Formula E Driver and Team Standings as both Porsche...
Jake Dennis of Andretti at the 2024 Misano E-Prix | Formula E

Dennis: Formula E brings something different, F1 is just a procession

Jake Dennis believes Formula E's peloton style of racing brings something different to motorsport in an era where Formula...
Pascal Wehrlein in action during the 2024 Misano E-Prix | Formula E

Wehrlein Secures Dramatic Misano E-Prix Win After Rowland Runs Out of Energy

In a stunning turn of events at the 2024 Misano E-Prix, Pascal Wehrlein seized a dramatic victory, capitalising on...
Pascal Wehrlein at the 2024 Misano E-Prix | Porsche Formula E Team

Results for Misano E-Prix 2024 Formula E Round 7

A dramatic end to Formula E Round 7 at the 2024 Misano E-Prix saw leader Oliver Rowland run out...
Oliver Rowland, Sebastien Buemi and Sam Bird battle at the Misano E-Prix | Formula E

Formula E Misano E-Prix 2024 Race 2 highlights and results: Wehrlein wins on dramatic...

Welcome to this Total Motorsport Live Blog for Round 7 of the 2024 Formula E World Championship, where history is set...
William Byron and crew chief Rudy Fugle celebrate victory in Martinsville in 2024 | NASCAR

How often are NASCAR Cup Series podium sweeps?

It almost feels too good to be true. Hendrick Motorsports winning on the 40-year anniversary of their first ever...
Lewis Hamilton faces the media at the 2024 Japanese GP | Jiri Krenek / Mercedes F1 team

Lewis Hamilton discusses the challenge of transitioning to Ferrari

Lewis Hamilton has admitted that he's not sure how to navigate the transition from Mercedes to Ferrari as it...
Antonio Felix da Costa looks on ahead of the 2024 Misano E-Prix | Formula E

Antonio Felix da Costa stripped of Misano E-Prix victory

Antonio Felix Da Costa of Porsche has been disqualified from the inaugural Misano E-Prix, resulting in his loss of...
Mitch Evans during the 2024 Misano E-Prix | Jaguar Formula E Team / LAT Images

Mitch Evans brands Max Gunther driving ‘dirty’ and ‘ridiculous’

Mitch Evans has hit out at Maximilian Gunther's driving in the first 2024 Misano E-Prix after the pair battled...
Mitch Evans leads the field in the first 2024 Misano E-Prix | Formula E

Is Formula E ‘crazy’ peloton-style racing too dangerous?

If you turned on the TV and watched the first 2024 Misano E-Prix, you would have seen Formula E...
- Advertisment -