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Ricciardo paid price for Raikkonen penalty

NEWS STORY
10/10/2016

Daniel Ricciardo believes he paid the price for Kimi Raikkonen's late grid penalty.

Following last week's heroics the Australian had a pretty anonymous afternoon at Suzuka. Although the Red Bull driver had already expressed concern at the Renault's lack of grunt at the Japanese track, it was his poor start which really made the rest of the afternoon an uphill struggle.

Though he qualified sixth, Sebastian Vettel's three-place grid penalty following the first lap incident in Sepang promoted him to fifth. However the late decision to change the gearbox on Kimi Raikkonen's Ferrari, which saw the Finn demoted five sports, promoted Ricciardo to fourth. Unfortunately this was on the side of the grid still damp from overnight rain which was to cause problems for a number of drivers, not least the man at the front, Lewis Hamilton.

"Raikkonen's gearbox penalty was sort of the opposite of a blessing in disguise," Ricciardo told reporters. "It put me on the wet side of the grid, and it looked like all of us on that inside line struggled, especially Hamilton.

"I don't think my initial launch was that bad," he continued, "but then having to go around him, I crossed the wet patch and lost out to Perez. That shaped the first stint, I struggled to stay close, I couldn't follow the cars that well with the dirty air.

"Vettel made quick work of me on the straight, we just didn't have the straight-line speed, so we struggled. We fell behind the eight-ball in traffic, and I didn't feel there was anything else we could do.

"In the last stint I finally got some clean air," he concluded, "and I could put in some fast times, but by then we'd conceded we were sixth and that was it. It was a bit lonely, but one of those things. We'll come back in Austin and have a good weekend there."

Check out our Sunday gallery from Suzuka, here.

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READERS COMMENTS

 

1. Posted by Stitch431, 12/10/2016 15:56

"As Verstappen has suffered three races from clutch prolems, ruining his start.."

Rating: Neutral (0)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

2. Posted by Kkiirmki, 10/10/2016 19:35

"Yep, and being demoted from 3rd to 8th had no bearing on Kimi's race???"

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