“For a moment, I thought I had done it” – Ricciardo says the damage from the crash at Turn 1 was causing the race difficulties
Daniel Ricciardo says he initially thought he made it through Turn 1 in the Hungarian Grand Prix clinch unscathed in P2, but the chain reaction of the falls caught up with him and he was dragged into a spin by Charles Leclerc’s Ferrari , which, as the Australian explained, seriously compromised the rest of his race.
The Australian qualified 11th at the Hungaroring and swept away the chaos sparked by Valtteri Bottas when the lights went out. But Leclerc was also caught up in the Turn 1 drama after being hit by Aston Martin’s Lance Stroll, and Ricciardo’s brief hopes of getting out of the P2 drama were dashed when Leclerc made a career in him, as he l ‘has explained.
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“For a moment, I thought I went through the chaos on Turn 1,” he said. “The start was good, I think I managed two or three starts; Obviously, I saw Valtteri enter Lando, who entered Max at the start, and I was able to cross him in second position. I was like, ‘OK, obviously I felt like I went through this…’
“Just as I walked out of the corner I saw Charles come inside and spin me around. I kinda knew already, the way he got into me, I think someone got into him, because we were already around, and it seemed strange. He then damaged his car, damaged mine… The rest of the race, the team tried to stick as much as possible, but it was very compromised on the right side, ”he added.
Hungarian Grand Prix 2021: Stroll hits Leclerc at the start of the race
With teammate Lando Norris having been knocked out of the race thanks to this contact with Bottas, Ricciardo was the only McLaren – but on a day when many leaders came out and a shock result was in sight he couldn’t do better than 11th. place behind the damaged Red Bull of Max Verstappen and the two Williams.
Driver # 3 explained why, as he put it: “So we don’t have the fastest car, and with a few compromises it hurts. And with a hard trail to go, it’s just hard to do anything and it started to slip away at the end there. Obviously a lot of… races were compromised today – I’m not the only one – but of course frustrating when, for maybe half a second, we got away with P2.
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Ricciardo will remain in Hungary for a midweek Pirelli tire test where he tries out the 2022 18-inch compounds, but the Honey badger said he wanted to get away from it all and rest after a grueling start to the season.
“Honestly, no, I don’t want another race after this,” he joked. “It was 70 long laps… or whatever it was in the end. I want to get away from it but I have tests – I am testing here on Wednesday. I stay on the game for 72 hours and then I leave. The last weekends have been busy, so switch off a bit, ”he concluded.