Daniel Ricciardo, Carlos Sainz Jnr, Istanbul Park, 2021

No chance to follow Sainz from back of grid to points – Ricciardo

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In the round-up: Daniel Ricciardo says he didn’t have the speed to follow fellow back-ror started Carlos Sainz Jnr to the points places at Istanbul.

In brief

Ricciardo had “four good laps” in Turkish GP

Ricciardo and Sainz shared the back row of the grid but while the Ferrari driver took points for eighth place, his rival admitted he didn’t have the pace in his car to keep up.

“We were side-by-side the first lap, I think I was ahead at one point, he was ahead, then we went back and forth and then he got me back,” explained Ricciardo.

“But then his ability to come through the field and keep going… it wasn’t really like his start was better and it put him in a better position it was just he was faster and he had more grip available. I just saw some of the moves he made, he drove very well so I’m not taking that away from him, but you could tell he was driving with confidence and the grip was was giving him a lot.

“We just didn’t have that. Even if I made five places on the start and he stayed wherever he was, he was still going to at some point come through, he was just a lot quicker.”

Poor front-end grip was the limiting factor throughout Ricciardo’s race, which he finished in 13th. “As soon as I got behind someone, I lost the front and then it started to get dead,” he said.

“So I pitted, thought we’d be quick with clear air on a new tyre, weren’t really that quick. We went through a phase where it was mediocre, then it’s like it cleared. And I remember four good laps where I felt like I could really lean on the tyre and I started to smile under the helmet and then it fell away again.

“The last 10 laps was just very difficult, just the rear. I had a look at the end, you could see the canvas, it’s down to the core.”

Brawn defends 2022 rules change

Analysis: F1 has its closest competition for years but will new rules ruin it in 2022?
Formula 1 may be enjoying its closest championship fight for years, but the sport’s motorsport director Ross Brawn remains convinced the sweeping technical rules changes coming for next season are necessary.

Speaking after the championship lead change hands again between Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton in Sunday’s Turkish Grand Prix, Brawn said: “This weekend I heard some comments around whether the 2022 regulation changes are needed given we’re currently enjoying such a golden season this year.

“I think that fails to understand the fact that while the championship is thrilling this year the cars still struggle to follow each other closely and create overtaking opportunities.

“While the 2022 rules won’t change the situation overnight I think they are a much better platform to improve the racing on the track and I’m sure that once the new rules have settled down, we will see some incredible races and championships in the future, with even more wheel-to-wheel action.”

Red Bull to run Acura branding at United States Grand Prix

Red Bull will replace the Honda logos on its rear wing and drivers’ overalls with Acura branding for the United States Grand Prix, RaceFans understands. Acura is Honda’s premium brand for the North American market. The engine cover on the RB16Bs is expected to retain the Honda E Technology signage introduced earlier this year.

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Comment of the day

Antonio Giovinazzi’s refusal to let Kimi Raikkonen pass him when told was a poor call, says @Nerrticus:

Pretty short-sighted by Giovinazzi. I get it, he’s trying to keep his seat (if it isn’t already gone).

Defying orders and likely costing your team points is no way to convince other teams you’re worth their time, or for Alfa Tomeo to keep him on as a reserve.

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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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22 comments on “No chance to follow Sainz from back of grid to points – Ricciardo”

  1. 25 years ago today…my goodness I’m getting old. I remember the 1996 Japanese Grand Prix like it was yesterday.

    I was 12 and living in South Africa at the time, so I think the race started at 5am CAT from memory. I set 3 or 4 alarms to make sure I didn’t oversleep, I was massively excited and also a smidge nervous ahead of the race, given what happened at Adelaide in 1994 and the mistake that Damon made at Monza it was by no means a foregone conclusion in my mind that he would take the title. When Villeneuve went off at Turn 1 I shouted so loudly I woke up the whole house…my parents and older brother weren’t happy but I didn’t care, Damon had done it and proved that nice guys can finish first!

    1. “look look under the bridge there!”

      Those immortal words stuck with me too for two years until ’96 @geemac. Funnily enough I can’t remember exactly what I was doing when Damon won the championship, probably watching my parents TV at 4am in the morning whilst everyone else was in bed! I do remember 1994 vividly, especially Suzuka and the 3.36 seconds. It also gave me hope that nice guys can finish first :)

      25 years though eh? Madness.

    2. @geemac

      Damon had done it and proved that nice guys can finish first!

      :) Yeah it was a sweet moment, especially after Australia ’94.

  2. COTD, yes, although he’d be a Ferrari reserve rather than Alfa Romeo based on Marc Gene’s words on Monza weekend.
    Nevertheless, short-sighted, considering Kimi might’ve caught Ocon early enough for overtaking.

    1. If he was 2 seconds a lap quicker, why couldn’t Kimi just overtake @jerejj? If it wasn’t possible couldn’t Hamilton done the same keeping quicker cars behind?

  3. @john-h Good thinking. Kimi indeed should’ve managed to overtake on merit.

  4. I think Williams need to check their tyre pressures and alignment, those wear patterns are a little uneven.

  5. Ricciardo back to his rut and proving it’s track dependent for him. Sad to see.

  6. Aren’t they supposed to be like that? I’d think that Turkey being a counterclockwise circuit, and because of turn 8, it is normal for the rights to wear out more… or you’re supposed to be compensating that with the car setup?

  7. Did someone forget to power on Ricciardo again? You have got to feel sorry for Lando not getting that win in Monza. He’s been at it all year. Ricciardo only once.

    1. You’ve also got to feel sorry for anyone who hasn’t been driving a Mercedes F1 car for the last 8 years, too…
      But this is how F1 works – sometimes it just isn’t fair and so many good achievements go unrewarded.

  8. Ricciardo has been quite a disappointment this year. Monza aside he’s been largely nowhere and if Ferrari do overhaul McLaren for 3rd then blame for that is squarely on his shoulders as so far he’s been a total downgrade on Carlos Sainz. He wasn’t the only driver that swapped teams to struggle but he’s the only one left that’s consistently struggling for pace.

    1. @rocketpanda
      You are oversimplifying Ricciardo’s struggles and ignoring the reasons behind it. He can’t drive the McLaren in a way which comes natural to him. If he does, he misses the corner by quite some margin. Daniel likes to brake and turn the car at the same time and take a lot of speed into the corner. The McLaren doesn’t allow him to do that and so he has to take less speed into the corner.
      The reason it worked so well for him at Monza, has to do with the braking technique there. The drivers brake in a straight line befor turns 1 (Retifilio), 4 (della Roggia) and 8 (Ascari), then turn the car. Ricciardo is always at a disadvantage when he has to brake and turn the car at the same time.
      It’s not all his fault, just something that he can do little about at the moment.

      These issues can be solved over the winter and especially with a fundamentally different car they have next year. I wouldn’t write him off for next year.

      1. Shouldn’t he adapt @srga91? The best drivers adapt, they don’t wait for the car to be designed for them. The shine has definitely come off Daniel, on his day he’s up there with Max and Lewis, but this season has been poor. He should have adapted by now, just like anyone does coming through the lower formulae (and of course as he did himself once). I dunno, it’s been too long now.

        1. Never driven a race car, have you @john-h?
          You can only adapt so much to a car that is fundamentally not working with you or suited to your style.

          Perhaps you underestimate just how much work teams are doing to adapt their cars to a particular driver’s preferences these days?

          1. I’ve driven a race car yes. Have I driven an F1 car, no. Have you? If you haven’t why is your point valid and not mine exactly? Why is Sainz now pretty much up to speed against just as good if not better teammate? Are you saying McLaren have neglected adapting their car to Daniel compared to Ferrari?

        2. @john-h Was going to say pretty much the same thing to @srga91 Sure, initially the Mac’s behaviour may have caught DR out, but drivers always have to be able to adapt to the car, and can’t wait for it to be ‘built for their style,’ and even that is a bit of an interesting thing as even a car built for a driver’s preferred style isn’t always going to behave the same way, and so a driver still has to adapt to the car and how it feels at any given session or stint at any given track on any given day. That’s no to say they don’t try to work on the car and help the driver be more comfortable more often than not, of course.

        3. @john-h & @robbie
          That’s easier said than done. Remember, Ricciardo only had 1.5 days of testing pre-season and runs in the simulator to get used to the car. Apart from the chassis, also the engine was completely new to him (different switches on the steering wheel, different power/torque delivery etc.).
          Look at Seb Vettel, who has had similar problems at Ferrari in 2019 & ’20. He’s a super quick driver, but just couldn’t drive the Ferrari in a way that follows his natural style. Instead he looked like a complete amateur at times.

          Ricciardo talked about his struggles in an interview somewhere around the British GP. He said that he can’t use his instincts when driving the McLaren, because it simply won’t work. At some corners he has to really think and concentrate at how to drive that specific corner. You have to be 100% concentrated when driving at such high speeds and if you have to think about it first, then you hesitiate and when you hesitate you lose time.

          In my opinion people often forget about the mental side in sports. If you feel unconfortable or doubt yourself, you can’t perform at your highest level, even if everything else is perfect.

          1. @srga91 Fair comment. For sure it’s not easy, but adaptation is still a necessary part of the job. And yeah of course it’s not always going to be the same for each driver in each circumstance.

          2. All well and good talking about their mental state but that never stopped people diving in and ripping Albon, Gasly or even Vettel apart whenever they struggled when the car didn’t behave how they wanted. And I’m not even ripping into him, I just thought he was considerably stronger at adapting than this.

            Ricciardo deserves the criticism, especially as other drivers that were struggling with the car not behaving how they want to (Sainz, Perez, Vettel) all are coping. All four are having ups and downs but Ricciardo’s downs are far more frequent than his ups and that at the moment more than anything is going to cost McLaren 3rd to Ferrari.

  9. 25 years, huh? I suppose then that it’s my F1 quarter-century celebration, along with Hill’s championship. For some reason the 10-year-old me just decided to get up at 6am to watch the Japanese GP. Became a fan instantly and the wait for the opening race of the 1997 season felt rather long…

  10. At least Giovinazzi isn’t driving for Alfa Tomeo next season ;)

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