Two different sides of free practice
Charles Leclerc’s fifth place at the end of the first free practice session for the 2023 Formula 1 Australian Grand Prix foreshadowed another weekend full of difficulties for Scuderia Ferrari, with the Monegasque finishing right in front of his teammate Carlos Sainz. However, in the second free practice session which was held at the 5.278-kilometre Albert Park Circuit in Melbourne, the arrival of the rain reshuffled the on-track values, with the weather conditions rewarding Charles Leclerc himself.
In fact, the number 16 Ferrari SF-23 car recorded the second best time after Fernando Alonso, almost half a second behind the Spaniard. A positive result therefore for the Maranello, even at the end of a second free practice session which was affected by bad weather: “Despite the rain we learned a lot – explained Charles Leclerc in front of the Sky Sport F1 microphones – we did various checks for the set-up directions we should take and I it seems that the feeling is better than in previous races. This is positive and it was probably the most positive FP2 of the season for us. Which doesn’t mean much, but at least it’s a Friday that ends on a positive note. Now we have to work and take another step in the right direction tomorrow. We hope to be closer to the Red Bulls tomorrow, but especially on Sunday.” – the Ferrari man pointed out.
FP3 very important
The peculiarity of the second practice session at the Albert Park Circuit in Melbourne has meant that Ferrari, as well as all the other teams involved, have not collected significant data in view of the Australian weekend, a fact that will push Charles Leclerc and the Maranello team to work intensely in the third and final practice session: “I think in qualifying we’ll be close – he added – for the race no one has simulated in the rain, so we’ll all arrive a bit blind on Sunday, even if in FP3 maybe we’ll learn something“ – he added.
The next sessions
In this way, therefore, the third free practice session for the 2023 Formula 1 Australian GP will be of particular importance, with the race broadcast live by Sky Sport F1 on tomorrow’s Italian morning starting at 3:30. A few hours later, and more precisely at 7:00, the much-awaited appointment with qualifying will take place, while on Sunday 2 April, at the same time, the Australian Grand Prix will get underway on the Melbourne circuit.