Charles Leclerc recently spoke about how his father, Herve Leclerc, made him fall in love with F1. Though we have not heard much about the Ferrari driver’s parents, we know that he has grown up watching countless F1 races hosted in his home country of Monaco. He has also mentioned how he used to go to his friend’s house and watch the race unfold before his very eyes from his balcony.
During an interview with Twitch streamer Manuelito, Charles Leclerc was asked how he was inspired to get into F1. To this, the Monegasque answered how his father made him fall in love with the sport. Since he was a child, they have been going on F1 tracks together. He said:
“My dad. My dad and I used to go on track together when I was 4. Those were the times that made me fall in love with this sport, the times with my dad. He made me fall in love with this sport.”
Q: who or what made you think “i want to do this”?
🆑: my dad. my dad and i used to go on track together when i was 4 years old. these are the moments that made me fall in love with this sport, the moments with my dad. he made me love this sport. pic.twitter.com/y91dhpiYEG
— leclerc data (@leclercdata) February 20, 2023
Later in the stream, Charles Leclerc also mentions how Ayrton Senna and Michael Schumacher were his favorite F1 drivers when he was growing up. He revealed how his father used to watch and love Senna as well. He said:
“Ayrton Senna for sure, even though i didn’t get to see him race but he was my dad’s idol as well. And also Michael Schumacher. I remember the first time I saw an F1 race in Monaco, I was a kid, I saw Michael going at turn 1, and it was beautiful.”
Sadly, Herve Leclerc died following a long illness in 2017 and never got to see his son race for such a prestigious F1 team as Ferrari. However, Leclerc junior always remembers him and cherishes the time they spent together.
Charles Leclerc spoke about his father’s death and how it changed him
When Charles Leclerc was still a teenager racing in F2, his father, Herve Leclerc, passed away due to a long illness. He shared his experience of driving the hearse on the day of the funeral and how it was extremely tough for him to accept his father’s death. He suddenly felt several responsibilities come onto him, which made him grow as a man. Speaking about the traumatic experience, he said:
“On my father’s funeral day, I had the authorization to drive the hearse… We drove a bit in the town before going to the cemetery. It was tough you know. No matter what you do, nothing prepares you when you lose your father.”
Pascale Leclerc: “Charles on track & at home are two different people. With his father, he was always talking about cars. Racing was Herve’s life. He has that in his blood. Charles was lucky, he received a lot from his father.”
— tami. (@Vetteleclerc) February 17, 2023
He further added:
“I’ve become more mature because losing him made me have more responsibilities out of the blue, making me grow as a man. Mentally, I’m stronger than ever after losing my father so early in my life. This changes you forever.”