Daniel Ricciardo responds to RB’s grim P18 qualifying in Spain

"I didn't really have anything to say on the radio because I was honestly quite surprised"

Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) RB. Formula 1 World Championship, Rd 10, Spanish Grand Prix, Barcelona, Spain, Qualifying Day.-
Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) RB. Formula 1 World Championship, Rd 10, Spanish…

Daniel Ricciardo arrived in Barcelona buoyed by a good result in Canada, and upgrades to his RB.

But on Saturday at the F1 Spanish Grand Prix, he qualified in 18th, with teammate Yuki Tsunoda just one place in front.

He tried to explain his RB’s shock lack of performance despite its many updated parts.

“I'd like to think there's still a bit more on the package to to figure out,” Ricciardo said.

“But that's something obviously we'll keep doing. On the flip side I do feel like [Friday] we were much more out of balance and actually today in quali the car felt much more together.

“I actually didn't think the car felt too bad in quali. Of course there's some corners where you feel it should be flat there or whatever, so you know you may be still missing a bit of load.

“But in general it was I felt much better than [Friday] so to still be back where we are I think that's still a bit more defined, I guess, so yeah I don't know.

“I haven't spoken to Yuki yet but I don't think he was too unhappy probably with how the car felt.

“I think we're just not that quick and normally you put three sets in Q1 it never guarantees you a spot in Q2 but it gives you a much better chance and obviously to still not make it I think it just shows that we don't have the pace with this current config so we'll keep chipping away. Three weeks on the bounce now.”

Ricciardo insisted the upgrades did not impact the car’s set-up.

“[Friday] felt like we were still trying to fight it a little bit so we did make some bigger changes overnight,” he said.

“So yeah, look, we probably haven't perfected it right now and maybe that's the encouraging thing.

“But I feel like we did make a good job overnight to get the car in a better place. So from a feeling, it felt better today.

“I had more comfort and confidence in it but unfortunately on this thing, the stopwatch, we're still where we were.”

The key to the progress was controlling the aero balance shift, Ricciardo said.

“I would say so. With the floors, when you get a new floor, obviously that's where these cars are so powerful in terms of the load and the aero characteristics,” he explained.

“So it's just trying to get on top of that. Which as I said, I felt like we made a good step today, but when Pierre told me P18 I didn't really have anything to say on the radio because I was honestly quite surprised.

“I knew we're not going to be at P10, but I honestly thought that would have been good enough for Q2.”

Ricciardo now faces the F1 Spanish Grand Prix with only two cars starting behind him.

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