Ricciardo "in shock" following Q1 "nightmare"


For once, the seeming ever-present grin wasn't there, for Daniel Ricciardo had failed to make it through Q1.

"A big disappointment," admitted the Australian. "I'm still in a little bit of shock, to be out in Q1, it is your worst nightmare as a driver.

"The medium at the beginning of the run was okay," he said. "We just did not get a clean lap, and then the soft was just messy.

"Already into Turn 1, I did not feel that I was helped with some traffic, and then the end of the lap just trying to hang onto the rear of the car.

"I just did not really get going from the start of the lap," he sighed, "and probably trying to play catch-up at the end meant a lot of mistakes. So not a good one.

"I am certainly still trying to get out of, let's say, a little bit of an old style, so I'm still quite conscious about how I approach every corner. It felt like yesterday I made a good step towards that. I certainly felt comfortable yesterday, or more comfortable than a couple weeks ago, so that is why to be standing here now is pretty dark."

Team boss, Andreas Seidl was quick to jump to Ricciardo's defence, insisting that the Australian's Q1 performance was not representative and that the conditions experienced at Portimao are exaggerating the issues the driver is having with the car.

"We have seen in the practice session that's definitely not the gap he's having to Lando at the moment," said the German. "He's just trying to put the lap together and it's not easy to get the laps in here, with the traffic, with the wind and everything, with the low grip conditions.

"There's obviously a lot a lot going on and again with the struggles he's having with our car at the moment this, I think, gets all exaggerated here on this track, and that's why it ended up like where we ended up today.

"It's minor things that probably get exaggerated in low grip conditions like we have them here, and like we also had them in Imola with the drying track," he added.

"I think he made a good step forward when we look at the practice sessions here. Yesterday and today, unfortunately in qualifying it did not work out today, but again, just the more laps, more time and I have no doubt it will come."

Looking ahead to the race, Ricciardo said: "I do not want to guarantee, but I'm convinced that it is going to be better. There's a lot of work ahead now, to be starting where I am, and just try and put it behind me.

"It is a session I do not want to think about too much, and just try and focus on the race now. A tough one, a really tough one to deal with."

Check out our Sunday gallery from Portimao, here.

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Published: 02/05/2021
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