Sauber has dramatically increased it performance level this season compared to its last two campaigns, but the team’s rookie wonderkid Charles Leclerc believes it can still aim higher.
The Swiss outfit’s partnership with Alfa Romeo, coupled with the use of current-spec Ferrari engines and the outstanding talent of the mercurial Leclerc have put Sauber firmly in the mid-field hunt this season.
“We all are aware it’s above our expectations and we need to keep on the ground and keep working,” said Leclerc.
“But, yes, definitely [Sauber can aim higher].
“We really thought it would have been a big problem for us this weekend and it definitely has not been the case. We are now a bit more comfortable.”
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The Monegasque has scored points in five of his last seven races, and was targeting another top-ten finish at Silverstone when his car was sidelined by a pitstop issue.
“I keep thinking that in terms of pure potential we are still a bit behind, but we are very good at hitting the right balance in the car that makes the car easy to drive and that’s why we manage to get this performance,” he said.
“If the others keep struggling to put their car in the right balance then it might be better for us because we might achieve this, but once they get their car in the right balance we might struggle more.
“Teams have struggled with the warmer conditions here, and we have maybe struggled a bit less, so maybe it’s a combination of things that make us particularly strong this weekend,” he added.
As impressive as his performance has been since joining the big time, the 20-year-old urges everyone at Hinwil to keep their enthusiasm in check before next week’s German Grand Prix.
“We need to keep our feet on the ground, keep working because it’s not going to be Q3 every weekend,” he warns.
“We will try to push. Hockenheim is a track I really like so hopefully it can be as good a weekend as here.”
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