Daniel Ricciardo admits that the Autodromo Carlos Pace is not one of his favourites, even if the atmosphere of the Brazilian Grand Prix crowd goes some way toward making up for the frustration and disappointment.
The Red Bull driver heads to Sao Paulo fresh from a welcome fifth place in Mexico, but confesses that Interlagos is not a venue he looks forward to visiting. He has only one scoring finish – tenth place with Toro Rosso in 2013 – from four visits to the circuit, but that is not the real reason for his lack of enthusiasm.
“What gave it away?” he laughed, “Brazil's a wonderful grand prix, with a great atmosphere in an exciting city, but the track doesn't really do it for me. There's just not a corner that gives you any real satisfaction. I don't want to make it sound dull, because it isn't but, like Russia, there isn't a corner that makes you go 'woooo-hoooo!'.
“It needs a few more corners and something really high speed. There's a couple that look good on paper but, because of the cambers, you never really have the grip to go barrelling in. The crowd really gets your heart-rate up before the sessions, so you want to be really on it but, instead, you have to be very patient.
“What I've learned is that you shouldn't think ahead too much. You have to take it corner-by-corner and concentrate on the one you're in. There's not many that you string together - there's not many corners full stop!
Coming so soon after the return to Mexico, the carnival atmosphere at Interlagos won't be a surprise to the drivers and that, at least, is something that fun-loving Ricciardo can look forward to.
“Brazilians are cool - lots of noise, lots of airhorns, trumpets, drums,” he smiled, “Like Mexico, it's the crowd you want for a grand prix. The start-finish straight is very narrow, so if your grid slot is on the outside, you're about two metres away from the grandstand - but you better hope they like you because, if not, you're a pretty easy target when you're pulling your helmet on!”