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Sauber's Leclerc completes latest Pirelli test in Mexico

Charles Leclerc taking part in the Pirelli tyre test at the Autódromo Hermanos Rodríguez in Mexico City.
© Twitter.com / PirelliSport

Sauber's test and development driver Charles Leclerc has completed the latest test of Pirelli's 2018 tyre compounds.

This year, the tyre manufacturer has been permitted to run 29 days of in-season tests using current cars and drivers. Data is then openly shared with all teams.

The 20-year-old Monegasque was in action on both Tuesday and Wednesday. On the first day he was working alongside his Force India counterpart Alfonso Celis.

Overnight rain before the second day meant that he started on intermediates, before moving to slick tyres as the test progressed. Neither Leclerc nor Sauber were told which development compound they were running at any time.

Leclerc had already completed a total of 115 laps on Tuesday. He then added another 104 laps on Wednesday at the 2.674 mile, 17-turn Autódromo Hermanos Rodríguez.

Prior to this week's test, Leclerc also participated in first free practice ahead of the Mexican Grand Prix. On that occasion he completed 28 laps sitting in for the team's regular driver Marcus Ericsson.

"The track is fun to drive on. I really liked it," the Formula 2 champion had said. "It has a bit of everything, all kinds of corners.

"I am learning more and more each time I drive the car," he added. "I am really looking forward to getting back into the Sauber C36-Ferrari for the free practice session in Brazil."

Celis had also been involved in FP1. Unfortunately he completed only 17 laps before collecting the barrier and triggering a red flag.

"I love the track and really wanted to put on a good show," the Mexican native explained later. "Unfortunately I pushed a bit too hard and ended the session early. I turned in and lost the rear at the final corner.

"The track had quite low grip and several other cars did the same thing, but I made contact with the wall. I wanted to show the true performance of the car, but it just didn't happen."

Celis successfully bounced back from the FP1 setback to pile on 114 laps on Tuesday. The session was conducted on slick tyres in warm and sunny conditions.

Pirelli’s next tyre test will take place at Interlagos after the Mexican Grand Prix. The McLaren-Honda team is scheduled to be in attendance.

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