Renault’s Daniel Ricciardo says he didn’t expect Ferrari to struggle as much as it has during the 2020 Formula 1 season.

The Australian claimed a strong fourth place for Renault at the Belgian Grand Prix at Spa-Francorchamps as Ferrari endured its worst performance of the season so far.

Sebastian Vettel and Charles Leclerc could only take 13th and 14th behind the Ferrari-powered Alfa Romeo of Kimi Raikkonen as its woes this year hit a new low, with the Italian outfit failing to score points on pure performance for the first time since 2009.

Ferrari is braced for further struggles at its home race at the power-hungry Monza this weekend given its engine and straight-line speed has been a major weakness in 2020.

Ricciardo, who has been linked to Ferrari many times in his career, said he had not given it much thought when asked if he had dodged a bullet by not joining Ferrari for next season.

"It's tough to know really how long this string of results will last for the team," he explained. 

"I find it hard to see it lasting too long, but at the same time, I didn't expect to see the results or for them to struggle as much as I have, at least in Spa.

"It was talked about before the weekend that they were going to have a hard time, and it proved very much to be the case. They certainly are in a bit of a spot at the moment.

"I didn't really think that far ahead, if, what, how, why it would look. 

"From that point of view I can't really answer it. But I'm sure they will learn a lot from this year, and I'm sure they will pick themselves up in a better place for next year.”

Despite Renault’s recent upturn in performance, Ricciardo insisted he has no regrets or frustration that he will be handing over his good work for Fernando Alonso to benefit from in 2021.

“Not at all,” he said. “I’m certainly keen to keep this train moving, and try and stand on the [podium] steps this year.

“I will put everything I can into it, and then next year is another story.”

 

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