Charles Leclerc had dozens of good reasons to leave Scuderia Ferrari, the first being that in 5 years he had only collected 5 victories, but it took just one reason to stay: Frederic Vasseur. Or rather, more than the Frenchman, it is the promise of being at the center of the Maranello project, even more so than in previous years.
Because for Charles Leclerc, there may not have been better options around, but the Scuderia needs talent like that of the Monegasque who, when he can, steps up. And between the lines of the contract, as highlighted by Italian journalist Daniele Sparisci, there is the intention to position him as the lead driver.
“Beyond the tearful declarations, the marriage will continue based on mutual opportunities. Ferrari has secured him, meeting his economic demands (talks of an annual salary of 30 million plus 5 million in various bonuses, up from the initial 25), and has recognized his role as a leader in the relaunch project led by Fred Vasseur, his first boss in F1 when he made his debut with Alfa Romeo in 2018. The proof of a dual status and a dual speed within the Scuderia is in the impasse of Carlos Sainz’s extension. The Spaniard – expiring at the end of the year – would like a two-year deal; the situation doesn’t seem clear, yet last year the driver chosen by the previous management of Mattia Binotto was the only one to interrupt Red Bull’s dominance, winning the Singapore Grand Prix. He is liked by various teams, not just Audi, also for his ability to direct technical development and fine-tuning. Certainly, yesterday’s announcement represents a turning point in Ferrari’s internal relationships, present and future, but something had already been understood a month ago when Carlos lost a long-time sponsor, Estrella Galicia beer, replaced by the management with the Italian Peroni,” wrote the journalist in a recent article published by the Italian daily newspaper Corriere della Sera.