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Leclerc says Ferrari ready for fine-tuning; Perez sees gap closing

Charles Leclerc says Ferrari will start fine-tuning its car on the final day of pre-season testing in Bahrain after the team set the pace on day two.

Ferrari teammate Carlos Sainz went below the 1m30s mark on Thursday afternoon to lead Red Bull’s Sergio Perez by three quarters of a second, with Leclerc having also been quickest in the morning session. The Monegasque says he was able to complete his run plan by staying in the car for an extra spell after an early lunch break, and believes Ferrari is making good progress with its car.

“All the answers [were achieved] because at the end we went through all our program, which is a good thing,” Leclerc said. “We have done big changes on the car and that’s what we were focusing on for these first two days. Tomorrow we will go and fine-tune a little bit more and go into the details.

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“The first two days went well; however, let’s be careful because saying that the first two days went well doesn’t mean anything in terms of competitiveness, so we need to wait and see for that. My initial feeling is Red Bull remains the reference and ahead for now.”

Despite conforming with the general paddock consensus that Red Bull has maintained its advantage, Leclerc also believes the test won’t show the full potential from any team.