Leclerc doubts Ferrari's low downforce approach will work at Silverstone

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Charles Leclerc believes Ferrari may have to backtrack on their "radical" low downforce approach with setup for the British Grand Prix.

With the Italian team down on top speed, they have tried to recoup some of the losses by running a Spa-type level of wing around Silverstone to be competitive on the four longish flat-out sections around the circuit.

On a single lap, it worked, with the Monegasque in the top five in both sessions, but the low-speed corners were a nightmare, particularly on high fuel.

“The race pace we have been struggling massively,” Leclerc admitted.

“Qualifying pace is a bit better than expected, this is good. We’ve taken quite a radical approach with our downforce level so it seems to pay off in qualifying but it doesn’t in the race.

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“The balance [meant it was] extremely hard to drive, very, very difficult not to do a mistake so we definitely need to change something on that.

“Otherwise doing that many laps during the race with this balance will be a huge challenge.

“We need to analyse the data and see what we can do tomorrow," he added.

"We can still change quite a lot of things so we’ll try to understand what we can change to maybe sacrifice some of the qualifying pace to be better in the race.”

Leclerc's issues though were nothing compared to teammate Sebastian Vettel, who lost the first practice to an intercooler problem and then had something loose in his cockpit in the afternoon, costing him more time.

"It was a disruptive day," admitted the four-time world champion. 

“A shame to lose the morning session, then in the afternoon, there was an issue with the brake pedal and that cost us some time so it was a bit difficult to get into a rhythm.

"All the same, even though we didn’t do many laps, we learned a little bit that will be useful to help us improve the car for tomorrow and then we can see where we are.

"The track should be cooler tomorrow and we should also have a better day.”