Ferrari ‘face Leclerc battle’ as details emerge on private chat with entourage

Ferrari may need to convince Charles Leclerc to stay with the team beyond the end of the 2024 season, according to reports from Italy. The Scuderia are hoping to confirm new deals for both of their drivers before the end of the year.

According to a report from Corriere della Sera, Leclerc has already expressed his doubts to his entourage about whether or not he can ever become a world champion with Ferrari, sparking a conversation about his long-term future with the team. 

Leclerc looked to be a title challenger following the early stages of the 2022 season, but Ferrari’s strategy mishaps took the Monegasque driver out of contention in multiple races before reliability issues and slower development than Red Bull swung the Championship pendulum the way of Max Verstappen. 

With both Leclerc and team-mate Carlos Sainz out of contract at the end of the 2024 season, team principal Fred Vasseur is keen to get them tied down to longer deals in advance to avoid the ‘silly season’ chaos that is set to ensue next summer.

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The reports from Italy suggest that these talks are currently ongoing between Ferrari and Leclerc, but they may not be as straightforward as Vasseur would like. Despite this, however, the 26-year-old’s priority is to win a World Championship with Ferrari and his love for the team is well known. 

Leclerc addressed his thoughts on his Ferrari future earlier this season, reiterating his commitment to the Scuderia and his desire to secure a new deal with the team. He explained: “Of course, I think every driver has considered their different options, once they get the [possibility].

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“But I have a huge love of Ferrari. And my first target and my first dream is to become a world champion with Ferrari, more than anything else. So, if there’s a slight opportunity for it to happen, I will have no doubt about pushing to stay here at least.”

The 26-year-old was also asked about when contract talks will be held, replying: “I just think it is not probably the priority at the moment: not for me, but neither for the team. We are just focusing on what’s really important now. It is to be as competitive as quickly as possible again. And then we’ll see. But again, I love Ferrari and it feels like home.”

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