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Daniel Ricciardo

Ricciardo frustrated and confused after Miami qualifying: ‘It’s not like we fucked up'

Daniel Ricciardo was at a loss to explain as to why he went from second row for the sprint to last row for the grand prix.

Ricciardo Australia
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Daniel Ricciardo conceded to feeling angry, confused and frustrated after going from the second row of the grid for the Miami sprint to the back row for the grand prix.

Ricciardo stunned F1 on Friday when he qualified his RB fourth for the one-third distance race on a track built around the Hard Rock Stadium, home of NFL team the Miami Dolphins, and then performing superbly to retain that position by the chequered flag on.

In qualifying for the grand prix, however, the Australian was equally as surprising as he failed to make it out of Q3.

With a three-place grid penalty applied from the Chinese Grand Prix, he will start last, pending an investigation into a pitlane incident he was involved in with Stake's Zhou Guanyu.

Addressing how he went from such a high to such a low, speaking to media including RacingNews365, he said: "I'm disappointed. I don't think we could have done anything in terms of...I didn't have the grip starting the lap."

Referencing how McLaren's Lando Norris suffered with his tyres at the start of the final sprint qualifying session after being fastest in the first two, he added: "I genuinely felt like Lando as to how he felt yesterday in SQ3.

"I don't know what he said afterwards, but I saw his lap and he went pretty much a second slower on that soft. You could see him sliding already from the exit of Turn 1, and it was a mess. That's honestly how I felt.

"I didn't feel like that second set of tyres gave me what it typically should have done with the new softs. I felt like we were a little kind of handicapped, and obviously, we don't have an answer as to why.

"I'm not sure if Lando had an answer yesterday, but I genuinely felt his pain."

Asked by RacingNews365 as to his overall feeling given the confidence boost a few hours previously with this sprint result, he said: "It's frustrating. It's not that we changed the car and did something different, and we're like, 'Damn! We shouldn't have done that'.

"The first set [of tyres] was fine. There was, obviously as always, some time to find and I felt like it was quite easy to find on that second set, let's just say, even with a new set of tyres, track evolution and less fuel.

"The lap time is there in the car. I don't know what happened with that set of tyres.

"It's a kind of shitty thing to say because there are no facts behind it, but you feel it when it doesn't give you what you want, so that's where the frustration lies.

"Going back, this morning was great. I told the team, 'Let's enjoy this for 30 minutes and make sure we don't forget about it'.

"Obviously, I did not expect this in qualifying, but you never know, this sport is very interesting and it can change very quickly.

"I'm glad we soaked it up a little bit this morning and enjoyed that moment. It wasn't that we weren't focused or anything for quali, it's that we weren't in a good place. I'm simply just going to say that." Jokingly, he added: "That set was a dud set."

Ricciardo conceded his engineer "was as confused as I was", adding to the gnawing bitterness.

"We'll obviously have a bit more of a look into it," he remarked.

"I'm on the second row today and the last row tomorrow. I'm angry about it but I know it's not something we fucked up. It was just an unfortunate session."

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