Bernie Ecclestone

Bernie Ecclestone had some harsh words for Charles Leclerc, saying that he is a shade overrated in 2021.

Leclerc is the main man at Ferrari, and has been so since 2019. With each top team having a young star driver in their ranks, the Monegasque is the star in the Ferrari uniform.

2019 and 2020 saw the two-time race winner outperform four-time world champion Sebastian Vettel. But then 2021 saw the arrival of Carlos Sainz, and by the end of the season, things looked very different.

The Spaniard had a slow start, and it looked like Leclerc might extend his streak of beating every teammate he has faced in F1.

However, the last day of the season saw the Smooth Operator leapfrog his teammate in the Drivers’’ Championship, capping off an unspectacular season for the latter.

Ecclestone had some harsh words for Leclerc, and said that he wasn’t up to par in the season that just concluded.

Leclerc (right) was second-best to Sainz (left). Source: Reuters

The former F1 CEO recently revealed the details of a phone call he has with Carlos Sainz Sr. He expressed his disappointment when his son defended Leclerc’s patchy form, something the team didn’t expect.

Good, not great

The 91-year-old Ecclestone said in an interview with Blick, “Carlos Sainz’s father called me and told me about his son’s situation.

“Let’s say it like this- many in Maranello are surprised that the Spaniard was able to heat up his teammate Charles Leclerc in 2021. For me, Leclerc was always a very good pilot, but not more.”

This was the first time Leclerc had been beaten by a teammate, and it happened on the last day of the season. A possible outlier it may have been, but he did have a solid season, if not a spectacular one.

Read more: Leclerc rates his 2021 season ahead of final race in Abu Dhabi

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