Daniel Ricciardo is looking forward to this weekend’s Formula 1 Turkish Grand Prix and the opportunity to go “full beans” around the Istanbul Park circuit.
The Aussie heads into the event in the midst of a purple patch with two podium results in his last three outings.
He sits fourth in the drivers’ championship while Renault has moved up to third in the constructors’ title fight, though only one point clear of both McLaren and Racing Point.
“I can’t wait for Turkey. I’ve only done one session there in Free Practice 1 in 2011 and it was in the wet, so if it’s dry, it’ll basically be a new track for me,” Ricciardo said.
“It’s an awesome circuit and a lot of fun to drive.
“It’s going to be pretty cool in a modern Formula 1 car with some fast corners and long periods of time on the throttle.
“I think it will provide good racing as overtaking should be more straightforward (than Imola).
“I think it’s a pretty complete circuit, so I’m certainly looking forward to that.
“I think full beans around there is going to be awesome. Turn 8 is a great corner, but so is Turn 1, the downhill, unsighted left. It’s really cool!”
Formula 1 last visited Turkey in 2011 with the venue having been all but dormant since then.
“Turkey is another circuit that we have been to in the past, but not recently,” explained Ciaron Pilbeam, Renault’s Chief Race Engineer.
“It has mostly medium-speed corners in the first two sectors, with a long straight leading up to the low speed final sector.
“There is also the very long and high-speed Turn 8, which places a high strain on the car, tyres and the driver, and which will be faster than ever in the current cars.
“As in Portimao, the track has been resurfaced recently, and the hardest three tyre compounds will be used – C1, C2 and C3.
“This could lead to low grip and a tricky car balance, as it did in Portugal, particularly with the low temperatures that are forecast for the race weekend.”
While F1 has visited the venue before, it will be an all-new venue for Esteban Ocon.
“Istanbul Park is a new track for me as I’ve never raced there before,” he explained.
“I watched all the races when I was younger, and it looks a very impressive track.
“I remember some awesome racing moments there such as Michael (Schumacher) and Fernando (Alonso) at the finish line on the last lap in 2006.
“It has some very cool corners and it’s a fast and busy lap. It should be exciting in these modern cars.
“Turn 1 is a downhill corner and it’s quite blind approaching it.
“There are a number of medium to high-speed corners, and it all flows nicely.
“Then there’s Turn 8, the triple left-hander. It looked an impressive corner in the old cars, and I think this year it’s going to be even better. I can’t wait to give that a go.
“Usually on fast tracks we have decent speed, so I think it’s going to be an awesome one to drive and to race with overtaking definitely possible on the straights.”
Track running begins on Friday with opening practice scheduled for 19:00 AEDT.