The Australian stormed to a sensational victory at Monza last time out, securing McLaren’s first 1-2 finish in over 11 years as Lando Norris finished second.

Since moving from Renault at the end of 2020, Ricciardo has struggled for form and has been comprehensively out-performed by his teammate.

Since the summer break, Ricciardo has found a breakthrough in performance, and he felt he was able to continue that upward trajectory at Monza.

“Braking maybe there was some stuff that I was not that strong on,”     Ricciardo said ahead of the Russian Grand Prix. “In general, I would not say that was a standout weakness. I was probably just struggling in a few areas. I probably was not perfecting anything in the first part of the season, and I’m getting closer.

“I would not say perfecting it yet, but certainly Monza was encouraging to go there with that style of circuit and the big braking zones and low downforce. So to have a bit of confidence throwing the car around, that was positive. I’m definitely confident moving forward, and hopefully, some good things to come. More good things to come.”

Since leaving Red Bull at the end of 2018, Ricciardo had only finished on the podium twice.

Ricciardo was asked if his win with McLaren vindicated his decision to leave Red Bull, where he replied: “I did not really think like that in terms of, even though the struggles this year or over the last couple of years at times… I never got into the mindset of is this it?

“Was Monaco the last time I will get there. I knew I would have to work harder for it at times, but last year, for example, getting a Renault back on the podium, that was such a target. So achieving that took a lot of fulfilment and so did the team. Monza did kind of make everything worth it. But it was nice to stand back up there.

“To do it with another team there is a sense of pride in that, making it work and getting to the top step with another outfit, and none other than McLaren. There certainly is some feel-good stuff about it. I like winning, winning is good, so it was good to do it again.”