Daniel Ricciardo, Red Bull, Red Bull Ring, 2018

Tow from Verstappen worth two or three tenths – Ricciardo

2018 Austrian Grand Prix

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Daniel Ricciardo says he tried to get Red Bull to let him take a tow from his team mate because it would have been worth two or three tenths of a second.

Red Bull alternates which of its drivers runs first in qualifying from weekend to weekend. However because of the potential benefit of getting a slipstream from another car, Ricciardo urged his team to give him the chance to run behind Max Verstappen during Q3.

However the team sent the cars out of the garage in the same order, with Ricciardo ahead. He then deliberately slowed in the hope of getting Verstappen to overtake him, which didn’t happen.

Ricciardo eventually set a time good enough for seventh on the grid, a tenth of a second slower than Romain Grosjean and 0.15s slower than Verstappen.

According to Ricciardo a “conservative” estimate for the lap time benefit from having a tow is two-tenths of a second. However he accepted he should have told the team before the session began he wanted an opportunity to run behind Verstappen.

“I was definitely trying to make the team know that I’ve got a short straw on a slipstream-sensitive track for being that car,” he told media including RaceFans.

“Again, because we knew we were doing three runs, I should have addressed it, maybe, and we should have talked about it. I felt disadvantaged for three runs and that was where I was frustrated. I just thought ‘one run, let me gain two or three tenths on a straight for free’.”

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The disadvantage of not having a tow was greater in Q3 because there were fewer cars on=track, said Ricciardo.

“In the car, even Q2, I didn’t really have a slipstream. But the cars are on track, you get some form of a tow, you’re not pushing it.

“So on the straights I could see my lap time, I’ll do a better turn one and then my lap time I’ll lose time, lose time [on the straight], do a better turn three, then lose time, lose time… So I was frustrated because I was like ‘how am I going to do anything?’

“We know we lose most on the straight. But I could see I was losing even to myself on the straight. So I was just like ‘how am I going to be up there in qualifying’?”

Red Bull’s lack of straight-line speed seemed particularly acute this weekend, Ricciardo added.

“We haven’t been that quick, I’m not really sure why. We’re losing out more down the straights than we thought and not gaining that much in the corners. I don’t really know why, we kind of just seem slow.”

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Dieter Rencken
Dieter Rencken has held full FIA Formula 1 media accreditation since 2000, during which period he has reported from over 300 grands prix, plus...
Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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  • 23 comments on “Tow from Verstappen worth two or three tenths – Ricciardo”

    1. Everyone else seemed to manage ok without one. I like Ricciardo but Verstappen is finding his form again and starting to show him up. It seems like that’s starting to play on his mind especially as other teams seem to be looking elsewhere.

      Before the season he probably thought he had a shot at a Mercedes or Ferrari seat but with Bottas stepping up this year and Leclerc looking like a new star his options are starting to close in.

      1. Ricciardos race pace has been quicker than Verstappens this yr so this is not the end of the world.

        1. No it hasnt. His results have been more consistent due to better risk management, but his pace has generally been worse than VER.

          1. Please see my reply to Arnoud van Houwelingen. Or you could go to the F1 site and do some checking yourself. The raw figures are there and easy to find.

            1. You’re going on fastest lap to support your statement, which is obviously deeply flawed. Which I think you know. See Ragef1’s comment below, who did the actual proper research, and remember it’s not wrong to simply admit you’re wrong..

        2. Actually Verstappens racepace has been quicker this year. Of all the rounds they raced together it is 55% in favour of Verstappen. In Australia Ricciardo’s racepace was quicker, China they were equal and from then on VER was quicker.
          Australia RIC-VER 39-19, China RIC-VER 28-28, Baku RIC-VER 17-22, Spain RIC-VER 25-41, Monaco RIC-VER 36-42, Canada RIC-VER 22-46, France RIC-VER 23-30. In total RIC-VER 190-228.

        3. race pace is not faster then Max .. maybe in some races but i think most of the time Max is faster. The reason Daniel is the better driver this year is because he doesn’t make stupid mistakes in the race. But the silver lining for Max is that you can’t learn to be faster but you can learn to be smarter. Hopefully he gets smarter!

          1. Ricciardo has been faster than Verstappen in five of the eight races so far this year
            Fastest lap;- Aus -1:25.945 Verstappen 1:26.880, Bahrain, Chinese- 1:35.785 Verstappen 1:36.206, Azerbaijan- 1:45.419 Verstappen 1:45.771, Spain-1:18.441 Verstappen 1:19.422.
            Ricciardo out qualified Verstappen 3 times. Ricciardo has won 2 GPs so far.
            He is ahead on points and on the current trend this will continue. It has been this way for the 2 previous seasons as well.

            1. You are basing this on fastest lap only??? Have a look at head-to-head lap times: http://en.mclarenf-1.com

              Max has been the faster driver since China. Only in Australia did RIC have more faster laps than Max. In Bahrain they both did not finish the race.

              On head-to-head qualifying its 6-1 for Max.

    2. I don’t get the frustration of Daniel. He won quali in Baku because he got a big tow on the long straight to the finish. It is clear as day when you see the sector times in 3th sector of quali in Baku. BTW Baku is the only time this season he won in qualifying from Max when they were both in Q3 (6-1 tot Max) Did he give a tow to Max there? the answer is absolutely not. In Monza a circuit with long straights it is again Max his turn to be in front of Daniel and again Daniel can get a big advantage there by having a tow there as well. So in that light i think this rule that is in place within the team is more of an advantage for Daniel then it is for Max!

      1. Guybrush Threepwood
        1st July 2018, 2:27

        Error, yes he did give a tow to Max in Baku during the same run in q3. I suggest you re-watch qualifying from Baku.

        1. To add to this, if Horner’s comments are true and the drivers take it in turns of following each other alternating each weekend, then:
          a) Baku would have been Ricciardo’s turn to get a tow from Max; and
          b) Why did Max ask why Ricciardo was overtaking him during their outlap in qualifying at the current race to give Max a tow?

      2. maybe max is getting the tow at tracks were its more important and that’s why ricciardo thinks its unfair

    3. DR just needs to make sure the other bloke and the team are on board, next time he wants a tow. Sounds like he decided on his own that he deserved a change in plan for one of the three runs. Perhaps he really really didn’t want Max to double him up in quali 6 to 3 again, like last year was a doubling in qualies over the season.

      1. I’m a massive RIC fan (but not a VES hater) and this looks and smells like the comments of frustration.

        He’s probably spent the last 6 months thinking that he would have the choice of seats at Merc or Ferrari, and both of those situations have disappeared. Now he’s left with keeping his own seat as the best option, and while he is told parity he has seen enough in the past at this team to not trust it 100%.

        If there is a deal on who leads and follows, then its bad luck for him this race. He needs to make the most of it in the races where he gets it on his terms.

    4. Really feel for Daniel. Lets analyze his season in 3 parts:
      First 3rd: Max makes mistakes in each of the 3 races. Daniel snatches a win in China. Bottas struggles with the crash at Australia in qualifying and the tentativeness against Vettel in Bahrain. Leclerc is slower than Ericsson. Daniel has the pre-contract with Ferrari till June 30th.
      Conclusion: Daniel showing why top teams need him. Top teams also clearly show weaknesses with their current or chosen drivers.

      Second 3rd: Max makes mistakes in 2 of the 3 races. Daniel manages a win without MGU-K in Monaco. Bottas improves his form (except for Monaco). Leclerc is finally able to beat Ericsson and gets first points
      Conclusion: Daniel still showing top teams that he is at the top of his game. Top teams’ current and chosen drivers doing slightly better but probably not enough.

      Last 3rd: Max makes no mistakes. Daniel is trounced in qualifying. Bottas beats Hamilton in 2 of 3 races (Canada and Austria) and is unfairly taken out in the other. Leclerc hits a proper purple patch. The pre-contract of Ferrari expired yesterday (June 30th)
      Conclusion: Daniel still showing good speed but no longer an out-of-the-world performance. Top teams’ current and chosen drivers are coming good.

      Poor guy. His season started so well but is going downhill too soon. Great driver. If I were him, I would choose Renault. That is the only engine without a no.1 driver.

      1. Good analysis

      2. As Moi said, good analysis.

        I simply beg to differ that the Renault will come good. The Concorde Agreement solidifies the top 3 until 2021, and Daniel cannot take a step back until the Concorde Agreement expires.

        He must stay at Red Bull to win races.

    5. These drivers need to make their minds up, when they can’t overtake the excuse is this because of the dirty air, now when they’re not quick enough in qualifying it’s because they aren’t getting a tow……

    6. GtisBetter (@)
      1st July 2018, 7:28

      This seems a bit weird from ricciardo. If I read everything correctly, the order has been alternating for years and both Verstappen and ricciardo have been doing it without hesitation. There is no reason for RB to adjust it. Or for ricciardo to expect them too. Surely ricciardo understands that if you would allow it this time, it would get ugly and complicated during the season, while right now it’s simple.

      1. If you go back through the races though you will see that Ricciardo hasn’t had a tow when he should have based on the alternating strategies that Horner espouses – eg. Baku.

    7. Rewind back to 2007 Hungary. It was Hamilton who was trying to get an additional lap although it was not his designated race to get one. Alonso played by the team rules and also saw to it that Hamilton didn’t get the adavtange.
      So Hamilton = Ricciardo, Alonso = Verstappen

    8. Well I admit I should have used a different terminology other than ‘race pace’. But that’s what you get when you don’t think through your statements.
      The point I was trying to make is the over emphasise of Verstappens qualies, rather than his actual maximum race speed.
      Ricciardo has been able to lap quicker than Verstappen in 5 of the 8 races so far when in an equal car with no damage during the race.
      There for Ricciardo has shown he is quicker than his team mate in race mode.

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