Charles Leclerc returned to the top step of the podium after claiming his third win of the season at the Austrian Grand Prix on Sunday. It was the Monegasque driver's first win since Australia, as he reduced his deficit to Max Verstappen in the Drivers' Championship to 38 points.

It was not all smooth sailing for Ferrari, as the dreaded reliability issues struck them again. The victim on this occasion was Carlos Sainz, who looked on course for an easy second place. It would have helped the Italian team massively close the gap on Red Bull Racing in the Constructors' championship.

The incident occurred with just under 20 laps remaining, while Sainz was preparing an overtaking move on Verstappen, who was in second place. A plume of smoke emerged from the Spaniard's Ferrari, which quickly turned into a raging fire as the power unit exploded.

Charles Leclerc
Ferrari driver Charles Leclerc POOL via AFP / Giuseppe CACACE

Ferrari were on course for an easy 1-2 finish, and a rich haul of points at Red Bull's home race. And with Sergio Perez having retired much earlier in the race, the Maranello-based team would have more than halved the deficit in the Constructors' Championship.

Sainz rued his bad luck, and it was not the first time this season the Spaniard suffered this fate. It was a bitter pill to swallow, especially after claiming his first ever F1 win at the British Grand Prix last weekend.

"We were on for a very easy P2 and a one-two for the team, a very big result for the team," Sainz said, as quoted on "We were very quick on the hard tyres especially, and we were catching back up on Charles. Good signs, I had the pace and the momentum that we were getting was very nice."

Top two: Carlos Sainz, left, and Ferrari team-mate Charles Leclerc congratulate each other after qualifying in Miami Brendan Smialowski/AFP

"But it looks to be the story of my season: as soon as we get a bit of momentum, there is something that goes wrong and it's difficult to continue with it. This weekend, we were very quick and it should have been an easy one-two for the team."

It was not all plain sailing for Leclerc, who had to nurse a throttle issue in the final laps to bring the car home. The Monaco-born driver has already seen at least three race wins slip away this season due to Ferrari's reliability issues and strategy errors, and was glad that he could finally end his three month wait for another race win.

Carlos Sainz
Ferrari celebrate Carlos Sainz's landmark win JUSTIN TALLIS/AFP