Sports News Update: Charles Leclerc has signed a new five-year contract with Ferrari until 2024. It follows an impressive first season for the Italian team after replacing Kimi Raikkonen for the 2019 season.
The 22-year-old from Monaco won back-to-back races in Belgium and Italy and scored seven pole positions, more than any other driver.
Leclerc finished fourth in the drivers’ standings, ahead of his four-time world champion team-mate Sebastian Vettel, who he beat on every metric in 2019.
Leclerc scored more wins, poles and points than Vettel, and in qualifying beat him 12-nine on their head-to-head and was 0.111 seconds quicker on average.
Ferrari team principal Mattia Binotto said: “With each passing race this year, our wish to extend our contract with Charles became ever more self-evident and the decision means he will now be with us for the next five seasons.
“We are very pleased that he will be with us for many years to come and I’m sure that together we will write many new pages in the history of the Prancing Horse.”
Leclerc said on Twitter: “I’m so grateful to be driving for such a team. I’ve learned so much during this first year. It is a great starting point to build a strong relationship for the years ahead.”
Leclerc joined the Ferrari Driver Academy in 2016 and made his Formula 1 debut with the affiliated Alfa Romeo-backed Sauber team in the 2018 season, finishing 13th in the standings with 39 points from 21 races.