Ferrari driver Charles Leclerc has opened up about the atmosphere at the team in 2020, claiming that it was a rather strange one.

Last year was miserable for the Italian outfit. They were able to accrue only 131 points and ended a shocking 6th in the constructors’ standings.

Sebastian Vettel was also set to quit at the end of the season and this made things even more tense, especially when he announced his decision to quit the team and join Aston Martin.

Leclerc is optimistic this season, though, with Carlos Sainz joining the ranks. He believes that together, they can help bring Ferrari back to the top of the grid.

“At first there was a strange atmosphere in 2020 when we assumed the reality of things, it was a little worse than we expected,” he said.

“There was a time when it wasn’t great. But the mindset changed very quickly, and there was great motivation to get back to where we were.”

However, Leclerc does not believe it will be an instant upturn in fortunes for the team.

“We’ve caught up a little bit, but we can’t expect miracles. There are positive signs, a lot of good work has been done, but it won’t be enough to get back to the level of 2019. We can’t forget where Ferrari was last year. In F1, everything takes time,” he said.

He said while he wished it were possible, the chances of Ferrari competing for the title in the upcoming season are bleak.

“We have to be realistic, although I am hoping for it, I don’t think we will fight for the championship in 2021,” he said.

Will the new face and time to address their problems give Ferrari a chance at recovering its past form?

Read more: “We have to thrive for better world”: Vettel believes he is making a difference

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