Ricciardo grateful for podium after Rosberg clash
Daniel Ricciardo says he has no regrets after his late race tangle with Nico Rosberg cost him the opportunity to challenge for victory at the Hungarian Grand Prix.
The Red Bull Racing driver was poised to fight for the win at the Hungaroring after emerging on the tail of eventual race winner Sebastian Vettel and pursuer Nico Rosberg in the closing laps.
However, the Australian was involved in a collision with Rosberg’s Mercedes as he attempted to take second spot with a lunge from a long way back into Turn 1.
As a result, Ricciardo sustained a broken front wing leaving him to settle for third spot, while Rosberg dropped to eighth after picking up a right rear puncture.
Despite missing out on an opportunity to challenge for a repeat of his 2014 Hungaroring triumph, Ricciardo says he harbours no regrets regarding his move on Rosberg, which stewards deemed a racing incident.
After a difficult campaign blighted by mechanical issues, the 26-year-old described the podium success as a “victory” before dedicating the drive to the late Jules Bianchi.
“There are a lot of mixed emotions about many things right now,” said Ricciardo, who finished third behind team-mate Daniil Kvyat and race winner Vettel.
“Firstly I am definitely still grateful to be on the podium. It has been a long year – a tough one.
“All of a sudden to find two of our cars on the podium is pretty surreal.
“I knew I could have sat in third and accepted that. But knowing I had the pace, I had the option, compared to Seb and Nico on the prime, I had an opportunity to do something about it.
“It was nearly like déjà vu. It was like the end of the race last year. I thought we had a chance to win. I went for it and it is a bit of a shame how it ended up.
“I guess it ruined both of our chances of a win.
“But at the same time, I don’t regret anything I did on track. I felt I drove with a heavy, but strong heart and that makes me happy, so definitely, no regrets.
“I owe that race to Jules (Bianchi) and I am very grateful to be on the podium it feels like a victory it feels like a long time.”
Meanwhile, Red Bull boss Christian Horner hopes the team’s double podium finish will lift the Milton Keynes squad for the remainder of the season.
“We managed to maximise our chances here as we knew it was a track that would favour our set up and the drivers and team have done a good job,” Horner told Sky Sports F1.
“It is great for the whole team as they guys have been working as hard as any other year so to get that double podium is the lift everyone needs.
“There are tough races coming up like Monza so we will enjoy the moment and take the momentum for the rest of the year.”