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Ricciardo sets out fresh 'victory' target for McLaren in Australia

Daniel Ricciardo is hopeful that McLaren will be able to fight for points on merit at this weekend's Australian Grand Prix.

Daniel Ricciardo has admitted that a points finish is the maximum McLaren can aim for at the moment and doing so would feel like a "little victory" for the team. McLaren endured a horrible start to the 2022 season in Bahrain as Daniel Ricciardo suffered a Q1 exit before he and teammate Lando Norris finished half a minute adrift of the final point on race day, despite a late Safety Car. Saudi Arabia, and the high-speed Jeddah Corniche Circuit, suited the MCL36 slightly better, with Norris able to grab a handful of points in seventh, while Ricciardo retired from a promising position amid technical trouble. As F1 moves on to Australia, and Ricciardo's home race, the 32-year-old is optimistic about McLaren being able to take advantage of the major changes to the Albert Park layout, which place an emphasis on speed. "It's going to be flowing and quite fast, especially [with] the changes they made," Ricciardo told media, including RacingNews365.com . "Perhaps that comes to us again and maybe we could fight for points. I mean, I know that's not aiming very high, but that's really all we can aim for [right] now. "Until we get some big updates, I think anything inside the top 10 we'll take as a little victory."

Ricciardo hopes Bahrain was McLaren's "bogey situation"

Ricciardo is also drawing confidence from his and the team's much-improved display in Saudi Arabia compared to Bahrain. "It was a more positive weekend. Obviously, we had a failure, so it's still not ideal, but we were much more competitive," he said. "I think both of us, [for] Lando and myself, the feeling with the car was certainly better. It doesn't feel bad, we'd just like that extra little bit of grip and downforce. "In a way, that's encouraging as well, because I think, fundamentally, we're not out, we've just got to find more chunks." Ricciardo added that he would put McLaren's improvement in Jeddah "down to the circuit characteristics", but is crossing his fingers that Bahrain will remain the low point of their season. "I'm really hoping that Bahrain was a bit of a bogey situation for us," he commented. "We cleaned up a few things, [some] stuff with the brakes that we had issues [with] in Bahrain, but I think it was just the circuit."

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