Ricciardo will ‘buy Russell a beer’ to thank him after taking seventh despite penalty

2022 Mexican Grand Prix

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Daniel Ricciardo says he’ll buy George Russell a beer to thank him for inadvertently helping him finish seventh in yesterday’s race.

The McLaren driver was running seventh in the closing stages but knew he would have to take a 10-second time penalty after the race which was imposed for his collision with Yuki Tsunoda. Ricciardo was therefore pressing on to extend his lead over Esteban Ocon in eighth place.

However in the final laps Russell, running fourth, drew close enough to Ricciardo that the McLaren driver feared he would be shown blue flags to make way for the Mercedes, which was a lap ahead of him. Doing that would have cost Ricciardo time and potentially left him less than 10 seconds ahead of Ocon, costing him a position.

But to Ricciardo’s relief, Russell pitted with two laps to go in order to fit fresh tyres and attempt to claim the bonus point for fastest lap. Ricciardo therefore held on to his seventh place.

“In the last few laps I was pretty nervous because George was so close to getting a blue flag for me and I knew I would lose a couple of seconds with that and that would have dropped me back into Ocon,” said Ricciardo. “So I was pushing like hell just to try and hold that two-second gap.

“Then when I heard he pitted for fastest lap, I was like… he probably doesn’t think it or know it, but I’ll buy him a beer anyways!”

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Ricciardo disagreed with the stewards’ decision that he was entirely to blame for the collision with Tsuonda, which ended the AlphaTauri driver’s race. “I’ve seen a few replays, I’ll take more of the responsibility but certainly I don’t feel it’s 100 to zero in terms of my fault,” he said.

Parc ferme, Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez, 2022
Gallery: 2022 Mexican Grand Prix in pictures
The McLaren driver said he wasn’t attempting to overtake Tsunoda when he took a speculative look up the inside at turn six.

“I didn’t lock [the brakes], I stayed on the apex. The truth is, I didn’t actually plan or want to overtake him there – I mean, of course, I’d love to overtake him – but I wasn’t into that corner to out-brake him and overtake him.

“I just thought if I stay there all the grip’s on the inside of that corner, it’s very dusty. So I thought if I could just stay there, keep him a bit on the dirty line, I’ll get a better exit. And we probably needed to give each other 20, 30 more centimetres and we were fine. Probably not even that.

“So I wish it didn’t happen and I’m sorry that it happened but I think 10 seconds was more than enough, and somehow we kind of still came through.”

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2022 Mexican Grand Prix

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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...
Claire Cottingham
Claire has worked in motorsport for much of her career, covering a broad mix of championships including Formula One, Formula E, the BTCC, British...

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14 comments on “Ricciardo will ‘buy Russell a beer’ to thank him after taking seventh despite penalty”

  1. Please behave Daniel. It was arguably the clumsiest move, I’ve ever seen you do. But that’s OK. You ended someones race and then entertained us.

    Goodness knows why so many are in raptures at the subsequent drive. But as usual the honey monster is allowed because apparently he’s a nice lad.

    Imagine if Hamilton or Alonso had gained so significantly – these boards would have been lit up with criticism.

    I’ve always liked him, but he now talks more rubbish than his driving this season!!

    1. In small response to the clumsy move. Most drivers in that section were playing dirty. Several times I’m watching drivers park their car in the middle of an over under and just not accelerate for 10-20 meters. Not illegal, but cheeky and to me not sportsman-like. It’s kind of like when racing against AI in a game, and they just continue their line without noticing you.
      I personally would like to see less “find a way around my massive car if you’re so called faster” type of attitude.

      1. Parking the car at the apex or closing the doors early is the name of the game @heidenh. What Ocon did to Bottas was fair and clever (In post race interviews, Bottas was totally fine with that and enjoyed the battle).

        1. I understand parking on the apex is the name of the game. It’s the plain wait to go that has been ruining it for me in recent years. I don’t know.. I guess it’s getting to me the same way “tire saving” and “fuel saving” and “the temperatures are too high cool them down at every single circuit because we designed the car to be so precisely on or only passed the limit so its not worth actually racing.”

    2. That was not the clumsiest move by Ricciardo by a long shot given he’s taken out teammates accidentally before. I like to think of it as overly optimistic.

      1. Hopefully the beer to be bought is NOT a “Fosters” oil can!

  2. To say he wasn’t trying to overtake him is a little too far. He was hoping Yuki wouldn’t take the line that he was fully entitled to (and was always going to take). It was very clumsy by Daniel, that bit of road was always going to disappear, I doubt Yuki even knew he was there.

    I think the ten seconds is probably because it ended Yuki’s race more than anything. But where did that drive come from after? In some ways it was both great and frustrating to see him back to his best. The fact it’s still there probably asks more questions than it answers about the last two years.

    1. Let’s not forget that Norris too had good pace at the end, just like last race @bernasaurus, and we have heard that McLaren struggles with full fuel, so it might well be that it’s a trait of the car, which is notable when the drivers are in the thick of the midfield because then it makes a big difference, while we didn’t when Norris is a bit behind Merc, and ahead of Alonso while Ricciardo is way behind the thick of the field has has happened for quite a bit of the season until now ;)

    2. I was mainly down to the strategy and tyres and Lando’s car being undrivable

  3. It seems as if Ricciardo has finally been granted a car worthy of his skill, but only as he is about to take time out of F1.
    For all those doubting him, this was a demonstration of his ability which was always there, sabotaged by the car he was given to drive.

    welcome back.

    1. And strategy, how many times has Dan been told to hold station behind Lando or given a crappy strategy when it was clear as day as to when to pit and they choose not to that way he doesn’t hinder Lando’s race.

      Mclaren have treated Dan like garbage when the reality is he is the only driver they have that has proven he’ll win a race if you provide him with the equipment.

      1. No need to denigrate Lando (and his performance right behind Ric at Monza last year), he’s quite a talent and at home with the foibles of the McLaren. That his team have treated him as No. 1 and often ruined Ric’s races on occasion with truly awful strat, sometimes exclusively for Lando’s benefit, is a different story.

  4. “I don’t feel it’s 100 to zero in terms of my fault,”

    Nor I. It was more like 110%.

    10 seconds for ending someone’s race. Like his tyres, soft.

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