Daniel Ricciardo, Renault, Sochi Autodrom, 2019

F1 is “sometimes not the nicest sport” says Ricciardo after latest disqualification

2019 Mexican Grand Prix

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Daniel Ricciardo has reacted to his second disqualification in three race weekends by saying F1 is “sometimes not the nicest sport”.

Ricciardo, along with Renault team mate Nico Hulkenberg, was stripped of his points-scoring position in the Japanese Grand Prix after the team’s brake bias system was ruled illegal. Two races previously, Ricciardo was disqualified from the results of qualifying after his MGU-K exceeded the maximum power limit.

Speaking to media including RaceFans in Mexico on Thursday, Ricciardo said such setbacks were “probably the most difficult part of this sport.”

“That probably [goes for] a lot of sports. But this sport in particular because there’s so many variables and so many things can go wrong.

“Now I feel great and I feel like the weekend is going to be awesome. But maybe something happens and it isn’t.

“There’s so many things that can take away from you. So for that, it’s sometimes not the nicest sport.

This year isn’t the first time Ricciardo has lost a result due to a technical infringement. In 2014 he scored his first podium finish at his home race, but was later disqualified due to a power unit infringement.

He admitted he has asked himself “why did I choose this sport?”

“I’ve said that a few times. But deep down I love it. I love the challenge of it. Even [after] what happened yesterday with the result of Japan. Now, I see it in the team, yes, we’re angry and frustrated but we’re all just like, well, screw this, let’s go and get those points we lost. It’s motivation.

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“You use the bad days as motivation. I think that’s the best thing. And the good days, you appreciate them, and I think it’s important to celebrate the good days.”

Ricciardo’s Suzuka disqualification cost him sixth place, which meant he fell out of the top 10 in the drivers’ championship. “I was frustrated because eight points would have been nice for me,” he said. “Now I’m just watching onboards of my pole lap last year and getting myself excited for this race.”

The double disqualification in the latest in a series of setbacks for the team which has hampered their efforts to make progress in Ricciardo’s first season with them.

“I do feel this year it’s been tough for us to get momentum,” he said. “Obviously coming in as a team there was pretty high expectations to build on what they had last year.

“It hasn’t really been that way so far. And when we do get something going, something like this happens or my penalty in Singapore or whatever. So it’s been hard for us to have momentum and have a real swing at races. I feel like something always seems to be getting in the way.

“But if we just sit here and say ‘well, poor us’, then we’re not really going to move forward. So I think we’ve got to brush it off. I think that’s the only thing to do. If there’s anything, a mistake made that we can learn from, sure we’ll try and learn from it.

“Otherwise, I think [for] pretty much everyone in the paddock, this is the two favourite double-headers of the year. So I think we’ll just use that kind of happiness and positivity to try and get some good results.”

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Author information

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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11 comments on “F1 is “sometimes not the nicest sport” says Ricciardo after latest disqualification”

  1. This is completely unacceptable. It was and is not Danny’s fault about brake bias or the MGU-K. It’s the mechanics fault. But Danny is suffering for it. Renault needs to kick it’s mechanics in the butts and say “if you hurt this team again for something you should have caught, then you are gone. You are gone with us and none of you will never work in F1 ever again.”

    1. Renault doesn’t care as long they aren’t caught,.I don’t think the Mechanics have something to say about new features, they only put the car together and repair it when things break.

    2. i think you’re exaggerating. i doubt some rogue mechanic set the brakes to adjust automatically. i feel bad for him too but rules are rules…

    3. And I guess similarly, if one of the drives crashes, it’s not the mechanics fault so the drivers should be told that if they hurt the team again, they will never work in F1?

      1. @petebaldwin Well if a driver doesn’t perform they get kicked, so yes in using that analogy.
        Also remember the disqualification of Webber in Melbourne for the fuel flow breach? He would not have known about it at all but he was penalised.
        There are many times when a part of the team are not at fault but it would be very difficult to separate the penalties.

        1. (John – It was Danny Ric who got done for the breach of maximum allowable fuel flow (lost 2nd place in Melbourne 2014) .. I have no idea why Dieter/Keith described it as “a power unit infringement” in this article)

    4. He’s been paid 1.31m for “suffering” DSQ from Japanese Grand Prix. Poor Danny.

      1. Jonathan Parkin
        25th October 2019, 13:42

        But by getting DQ’d he raced got sixth place and it was all for nothing

  2. OK laugh if you like but at first glance Ricciardo looks a bit like Adam Sandler from Happy Gilmore :)

    1. @johnrkh – oh man, that brings back memories of a rare Sandler movie that was good.

  3. At least they haven’t asked him to crash yet :-)

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