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Our driving force

19 marzo 2021

It is a cold, crystal clear morning when Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz make their way out onto the racetrack. The two Scuderia piloti are starring in an special video to show off the SF90 Spider, the 1,000cv hybrid launched at the end of 2020.

You only need to observe how they both approach the two cars to understand how much a Ferrari is capable of provoking emotions even in those who, like these two, are well used to speed. 

As for the two young men themselves, the silent exchange of glances, followed by comments and opinions, suggests there is already a shared understanding. You can see exactly that in the exclusive behind-the-scenes video below.

However, they no doubt want to know a little more about each other, and so do we.…

In his third season at Ferrari, Charles Leclerc comes into the pits to answer a few questions from his new Spanish teammate...

How did it start, your love of racing?
When I was three years old, my dad had to go to visit his best friend, Philippe Bianchi, Jules's dad, and so he took me with him to the kart track at Brignoles, near Nice. I did a few laps and fell in love with this sport.

Is it true that signing for Ferrari changes your life?
In Italy Ferrari is like a religion. Wearing that red racing suit is an honour, it makes you feel part of a family that is unique in the world. Here at Ferrari there’s a passion and an incredible dedication, in every man and woman.

How would you describe yourself as a racing driver?
I’m someone who works really hard, by myself and together with the team. That I'm quick – at least I hope so, and I certainly always try to be! And aggressive. I try to learn from each one of my errors, because that’s the only way to grow.

Having a teammate that is quicker than you, is that more a stimulus or an irritation?
It's more of a stimulus. Every time that a teammate has been faster than me I have always tried to understand the reasons why. There is an enormous amount of data available so you can analyse it to understand where the other one has been faster.

How do you find living in Italy?
I like it a lot! I like the sincerity of the people, the way they accept you: not to mention the food … it’s always a problem keeping to a diet when I spend a few days at Maranello!

The special video of Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz in the Ferrari SF90 Spider and SF90 Stradale Assetto Fiorano can be viewed here.

After six ever-ascendant years in F1, Ferrari debutant Carlos Sainz pulls alongside his Monégasque teammate for a chat...

Why did you choose to become a racing car driver?
Growing up I began to realise who my father was [editor's note: Carlos Sainz Snr is a two-time world rally champion] and my interest in racing grew very quickly. Then the era of Fernando Alonso began ­and I fell immediately in love with this sport.

We are going to be working together, so I'd like to know your work philosophy.
I believe in hard work, in being demanding of myself on every occasion, in paying attention to every little detail and trying to create the right atmosphere in whichever work environment I find myself. 

If I say ‘Enzo Ferrari’, what comes to mind?
Enzo Ferrari represents many, many things. His absolute determination and his way of interpreting sports car racing have led to the creation of the most important – and most victorious – marque in racing history!

There can’t not be some competition between us. What do you expect from our first year together?
The important thing is to have a respectful relationship on and off the track. You will try to beat me and I will try to beat you! But I'm sure it’s going to be healthy competition and that we will share feedback about the car and work together to carry Ferrari forward.

What impressed you most upon arriving at Ferrari?
Perhaps the thing that excited me the most was my first ever day at the factory and the test at Fiorano, at the end of January. Doing my first out-in with a Rossa was really something!

The drivers are wearing the Men’s Leather Jacket from the Scuderia Ferrari Collection SS21

The interviews are an extract from the cover story of the 50th issue of The Official Ferrari Magazine, available now