Leclerc told to stay at Ferrari by fans as he bids to beat Verstappen

Charles Leclerc thanks fans after Italian Grand Prix win

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Charles Leclerc has been told to stay put at Ferrari by Formula 1 fans, with the Monagasque no doubt keen to pip Max Verstappen in 2023. Leclerc secured his best F1 finish yet in the season just gone, having finished second in the driver standings behind defending world champion Verstappen.

Things could have been much different for the Ferrari man, who began the year the stronger driver in 2022. The 25-year-old from Monte Carlo proved to be the early pace setter in the standings, winning two of the first races of the season.

Leclerc looked to be the Red Bull star’s biggest challenge for the F1 crown, however after his quick start his form soon slowed down, giving the ascendency to the eventual champion Verstappen.

There had been rumours Leclerc could look elsewhere away from Ferrari in order to finally get his hands on the world championship. Express Sport readers however believe the 25-year-old is best off staying put in order to have the best chance of becoming a world champion.

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Nearly 4,000 readers took part in a poll which asked if Leclerc needed to leave the Prancing Horse in order to win the Formula 1 title. Whilst the results were fairly tight, overall a majority of 57.7% called for Leclerc to continue to drive for the famous Italian setup.

One move Leclerc had been linked with was one to Mercedes, with their star man Lewis Hamilton closer to the end of his career than the start. Hamilton’s current deal with the Silver Arrows will remain until the end of 2023, but with the Englishman in his late 30s it remains unknown as to what could come next.

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One man who could prove the perfect replacement for the seven-time world champion is Leclerc, with rumours speculating over the past few weeks. Leclerc addressed his future in Abu Dhabi last week, claiming his main priority was to deliver success for Ferrari up until his contract expires in 2024.

The 25-year-old revealed: “2024 is a long time away and there is still time left at Ferrari. Being at this team has always been my dream. My objective at the moment is to win with Ferrari and then we’ll see.”

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