Leclerc dismissed ideas that his intentions were brought on by the annual end of year FIA Gala or to try and become the lead driver at Ferrari coming into next season, but noted that his goal was purely for personal motivation.
"It's definitely not for the Gala! I love Gala but I don't want to be just third for the Gala," Leclerc said. "It's neither for the leadership but obviously being third in the Formula 1 world championship will be crazy.
"I mean last year as I said I was fighting for the thirteenth position and I never imagined that I could be fighting for a podium in the world championship this year.
"So for just the personal achievements it would be great and I would be extremely happy of it. It's mostly for myself, and I would be very happy."
Leclerc believes that his driving style and tyre management still needs a bit of improvement in comparison to rivals Mercedes and his teammate Sebastian Vettel, but noted that his race last weekend in Mexico is an indication that he is slowly improving.
"I think that in Mexico I was pretty strong," Leclerc said. "If you look at the first stint I was very strong. In Mexico, I tried different things but I don't think it hurt my race. I think I have learned a lot there.
"We are trying to work on everything. For sure on some tracks where the degradation was big they [Mercedes] seem to keep the tyres longer, and we are working quite a lot on that.
"As I have said, I think driving wise on my side there is still quite a lot of improvements to do and to try and achieve the same lap times without using as much of the tyres."
Bahrain International Circuit - Winter testing