Ricciardo vows to make up for qualifying spin in Portuguese GP after missing out on Q3 run
A mistake from Daniel Ricciardo is a rarity, but the Australian let one slip in Portuguese GP qualifying which ultimately prevented him from participating in Q3 – however the Renault racer is optimistic for the race and has vowed to “make up for the error” come race day…
Ricciardo lost the car at Turn 11 on his final run in Q2, sliding backwards through the gravel and into the barrier, damaging his rear wing. While he recovered to the pits, his Renault team fractionally missed out on repairing his car in time to get out and set a lap time in Q3.
READ MORE: Hamilton beats Bottas to Portuguese GP pole with final charging run at Portimao
“I spun,” Ricciardo deadpanned when asked to describe what happened. “I don’t know. The cars are quite sensitive, I had to get through a few lapped cars, they are off the race line, but turning and braking, it depends where the wind is coming from.
“I felt like as soon as I got in, I lost the rear but I’ll watch it again, and see if it was something I caused it from, but it’s done. It is obviously a shame, because when I lost it, I was OK, I’ll spin and get going again, but it kept going until I hit the barrier and damaged the rear wing.
“The team got very close to getting me back out on track for Q3. One more minute and we were on track. It’s a shame, I could see them working hard in the mirrors, trying to make it work for me, so it was a bit of a let down for them, but we’ll make it happen tomorrow and yeah, move up.”
READ MORE: Hamilton ‘had to drive the nuts off the car’ to secure 97th pole at ‘hardcore’ Portimao
Regardless of the spin, Renault didn’t appear to have the pace to compete with Racing Point, in the hands of Sergio Perez, and McLaren – their rivals in the fight for P3 in the constructors’ championship, but Ricciardo is hopeful they will be more in the fight in terms of long run pace come Sunday afternoon.
“I feel once we settle into a rhythm, we can get the car in a bit of a happier place,” said Ricciardo, who outqualified team mate Esteban Ocon for the 10th consecutive race, the Frenchman starting one place further back in 11th.
“On one lap performance, we struggled a bit this weekend. I think the surface is so slippery, everyone is putting on all the downforce they have got.
“Although we have improved, I think we still know that is our weakest area, a lot of cars still have better real high downforce packages than us and I think that is where they are getting us on one lap.
“Once the race settles, and we get into the tyres, it should be OK. I’m ready to move forward, finish better than tenth and make up for the error today.”
Ricciardo is on a five-race points streak - the third longest in F1 - and bagged Renault's first podium of the year last time out in the Eifel Grand Prix.