25 November 2013
Brazilian Grand Prix: Ricciardo takes point on final run with Toro Rosso
Daniel Ricciardo: At midnight tonight I become an Infiniti Red Bull Racing driver, but for now I just want to say thank you to everyone at Scuderia Toro Rosso, here at the track, back in Faenza and at our wind tunnel for two fantastic years.
Daniel Ricciardo concluded his time with Toro Rosso by taking tenth place and the final point in the season-ending Brazilian Grand Prix on Sunday.
Ricciardo, who will step up to Red Bull's 'A' team next year and replace Mark Webber, qualified seventh, but had a poor start and lost two places. He then lacked 'pure pace' in the race, although he still managed to score and ends the season 14th in the Drivers' Championship with 20 points on the board – seven more than team-mate, Jean-Eric Vergne.
“The conditions were very difficult with the occasional drop of rain,” he said after the race at Interlagos. “From the cockpit, it's actually quite difficult to judge how much rain there is. You see a few drops on your visor, look at the guy in front of you and if he doesn't go off, you assume it's dry.
“We were not very quick from the start though, and I was struggling with cold graining on the front right. We did try and rebalance it during the race, but we struggled in terms of pure pace, so I was quite happy to come away with a point.
“At midnight tonight I become an Infiniti Red Bull Racing driver, but for now I just want to say thank you to everyone at Scuderia Toro Rosso, here at the track, back in Faenza and at our wind tunnel for two fantastic years.
Team-mate Jean-Eric Vergne meanwhile had a more difficult afternoon, and like Ricciardo had a poor start. He eventually finished down in 13th.
“I had a catastrophic start,” Vergne conceded, “and after that, I had a car that was very difficult to drive [too]. I know it's the same for everyone as it was the first time we ran here in the dry, but the balance of my car just wouldn't allow me to push. It improved in the final two stints but it was a real struggle.”
“As for the incident with [Pastor] Maldonado [on lap 65], I came up the inside of him at Turn 1 and he didn't leave me any room, so we touched and he spun.
“This season has had more bad times than good ones for me, but we are all determined to work very hard over the winter to start next season with a better car.”
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