The McLaren driver ended practice at Istanbul Park down in 14th place, 0.5s off teammate Lando Norris.

Explaining his practice woes, Ricciardo revealed that it was simply a case of not putting the lap together on the soft tyres.

“It was to go fast, but I’m not, yes, I wouldn’t let’s say, for the fans out there, for the fans of RIC 3, DR3, Daniel that is me, I wouldn’t be concerned,” Ricciardo said. “It was just yes, I didn’t put the lap together.

“But I’m actually pretty relaxed. I think we know where we are. I think we’re… there or thereabouts. And a bit of fine-tuning tonight. From a driving point of view I actually had a lot of fun today; the track was cool, completely different to last year, the grip was an insane amount better and made the experience really enjoyable. Yes I wouldn’t say the time represents the feeling today.”

The newly-laid track surface at Istanbul Park made for a chaotic return in 2020 - a stark contrast to this year with conditions considerably improving.

The Australian was surprised by how much grip there was in Friday practice.

“I mean, we were prepared to have grip like this but I would say it’s still a bit of a surprise to have that much,” he added. “So a little bit of a surprise, but the tyres – they brought different compounds here this year – they were a step softer and there wasn’t a whole lot of difference between the three today.

“That was maybe a bit of a surprise; I thought the soft would have been miles quicker – I don’t think that was necessarily the case – maybe that. What that means for tomorrow? I’m not sure, so we’ll do our homework tonight.”

With rain forecast on Saturday, Ricciardo is confident McLaren will continue its strong run of form in damp conditions.

“On the radar [FP3 might be wet], and then quali might dry,” Ricciardo explained. “I don’t know. I don’t want to be the weatherman. I think we can be prepared for each condition. The wet, lately, we’ve been pretty competitive so not concerned, and if it’s dry we’ll be better than 14th – so we’re OK.”