Positives for Ricciardo despite tough Monaco GP
By Mat Coch
Monday 24th May, 2021 - 8:51am
McLaren boss Andreas Seidl saw positive signs from Daniel Ricciardo during the Formula 1 Monaco Grand Prix even though he was outside of the points.
The Australian finished a lap down in 12th in Sunday’s race, the first time he’s not finished in the top 10 in 2021.
Team-mate Lando Norris raced his way to third place, his second podium of the season so far.
A tough qualifying session on Saturday saw Ricciardo eliminated in Qualifying 2 as he recorded just the 12th fastest time.
That effectively became 11th on the grid when Charles Leclerc was unable to start, only to fall back two spots on the opening lap.
Though able to recover one of those, Ricciardo’s Saturday performance ultimately dictated his Sunday result.
By contrast, Lando Norris picked up a second podium of the season, finishing third behind Max Verstappen and Carlos Sainz after qualifying fifth.
“I don’t think it was such a bad race from Daniel’s side,” Seidl said when asked about Ricciardo’s performance by Speedcafe.com.
“I think there were periods in the race when he had free air where he could actually show what he’s able to do here around Monaco.
“But again, if you start this race here in P11, and unfortunately drop back in the first corner two positions, your race is done.”
Ricciardo ended the race with the fourth fastest lap, his best quicker than that managed by race winner Verstappen.
Excluding the times set by Lewis Hamilton and Yuki Tsunoda, both of which came late in the race on soft compound tyres, Ricciardo was the second fastest driver, just 0.026s off Sergio Perez.
“I think if you look back since the beginning of season, we have made two steps forward with him,” Seidl added.
“We simply have to keep working together now as one team, stay calm, keep analysing, keep learning.
“He sees that the potential is there, which is I think the positive thing for him to see that, and that Lando can pull it off.
“At the same time we look at the team side as well what we can do in order to help him on the car side to give him back this natural feeling to go fast.”
The Azerbaijan Grand Prix, round six of the 2021 season, takes place on June 4-6.