Daniel Ricciardo thinks that the season-opening Bahrain Grand Prix weekend will in some ways be like an extended test for the drivers and teams.
A wave of new technical regulations come into effect for the 2022 F1 season, meaning the cars will look and behave rather differently compared to previous years.
Ricciardo is not expecting this to result in turbulent races at the beginning of the campaign, though, as he anticipates that the drivers will soon adapt.
"I think we drivers are good enough to be there more or less immediately," Ricciardo told Auto Motor und Sport.
"As the season progresses, we will fine-tune ourselves in parallel with the development of the cars."
Testing schedule in 2021 didn't help Ricciardo
Ricciardo had a difficult first year with McLaren in 2021, and feels that the limited number of test days before the start of the season did not help.
With two three-day tests taking place ahead of the 2022 calendar getting underway, the Australian believes that this will enable the drivers to adjust to the new cars at an even faster pace.
"Last year, looking back, it was quite difficult for me with only one-and-a-half days in the car before the start of the season," Ricciardo said.
"With three days in the winter tests, it's twice as many. That's why it should be okay. We test first in Barcelona and then in Bahrain. There, the season also starts a week later, which helps.
"In a way, the first race weekend will be an extended test for all of us."
Pre-season testing begins in Barcelona on 23-25 February, with the second test in Bahrain following on 10-12 March. The first race of the year then takes place in Bahrain on the weekend of 18-20 March.
Ricciardo and teammate Lando Norris will launch McLaren's new challenger, the MCL36, at 19:00 GMT on Friday.
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