Charles Leclerc avoided talk of Ferrari using team orders to back him in his battle for the Formula 1 Drivers' championship with Max Verstappen. Ferrari team principal Mattia Binotto has thus far maintained that both drivers - Leclerc and Carlos Sainz - are free to race.

The Monaco driver lost the lead in the championship following his retirement at the Spanish Grand Prix and now trails the Red Bull Racing driver by six points. Sainz is 39 points behind his teammate after six races, and a further 45 behind the championship leader.

Red Bull made it clear in Barcelona that they are fully behind Verstappen after they instructed Perez to let the Dutch racer pass on two occasions. Ferrari have been advised to do the same if they want to battle the Austrian team for the Drivers' championship.

Moreover, Sainz has struggled to get to grips with his new Ferrari machinery despite the Italian marque producing a race winning car. Leclerc was asked if he wanted Ferrari to favour him similar to Red Bull prioritising Verstappen.

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

"I don't know to be honest," Leclerc said, as quoted on Crash. "I will definitely not be the one taking those types of decisions so maybe you can ask Mattia [Binotto, Ferrari team principal]! Red Bull made it clear what their intentions are and they did it very early in the season, but concerning us I don't know."

"I haven't spoken about it with Mattia and I haven't heard anything about this for now."

While Leclerc has backed Sainz to get over his troubles, the Monaco resident also wants Mercedes duo Lewis Hamilton and George Russell to enter the fight for race wins. The Silver Arrows made a huge step forward at the last race in Spain, and showed that they are closing in on Red Bull and Ferrari at the front.

"They've had a difficult start of the season but there's no question for me that they will be back very very soon, and as they've shown in Barcelona, they already did a big step forward," Leclerc said.

"I hope they can join us to fight for wins because this should be exciting for F1 to have a three-team battle and to have George and Lewis also fighting for wins."

The F1 juggernaut is at the Principality this weekend for the seventh race of the season. Title contenders Red Bull and Ferrari are expected to be fighting it out at the front. It remains to be seen if Mercedes can carry their momentum from Barcelona and make it a three team battle in Monaco.

Lewis Hamilton
Seven times world champion Lewis Hamilton was fourth in his struggling Mercedes Paul Crock/AFP