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Ricciardo excited by 'refresh' with F1's next generation of cars

Daniel Ricciardo is taking an optimistic approach to F1's new cars, saying he is eager to experience a new way of driving.

Daniel Ricciardo is hopeful that the new 2022 Formula 1 cars will better suit his driving style, after a tough first season with McLaren in '21. While the Australian won a Grand Prix by claiming a popular victory at Monza, he struggled for pace and form throughout the majority of the season. As a result, he is welcoming the changes to the cars for 2022. F1 introduces a raft of new technical rules this year, which sees the cars move towards a ground effect-generated downforce philosophy. The changes have the potential to suit some drivers' styles more than others, and Ricciardo is excited to see whether he can benefit from the changes. "I hope it does!" Ricciardo told media, including RacingNews365.com , when asked whether the new cars could end up suiting his driving style far more. "With change comes optimism, because maybe this will be perfect for me, maybe this car will do all the things that I like a car to do. "So, for sure, there's optimism with that, and optimism that there will be some change in the field as well with teams or with drivers."

Ricciardo thrilled to have a "refresher" with 2022 rules

Admitting that he struggled in 2021, Ricciardo says he is excited about every driver essentially having to start off from a new base level to adjust to the new rules. "Until we hit the track, we don't really know, but the thought of it now is exciting," he said. "I think, last year, I improved as the year went on, but I can't honestly say that I was still driving the best I'd ever driven. "Having this change is also a little bit of an optimistic kind of approach, or a refresher for me, to think, 'OK, maybe these cars now will allow me to do that better'. "Time will tell, but I am excited to have a new generation."

Do the new rules feel like a category switch?

Having only driven the new cars through the simulator, Ricciardo has to wait for McLaren's shakedown to gauge how the MCL36 feels in reality, before driving it in anger at the first pre-season test in Barcelona. Asked whether his impressions of the new rules felt like moving into another category of racing, Ricciardo stopped short of saying the changes are that dramatic. "Maybe not that extreme," he commented. "It's enough to know that there's a big change here, there's a bit going on. I probably wouldn't go as extreme as saying it feels like a category switch. "A lot of driving is obviously through feel and yes, the lap time tells one story, but a lot of it is just what you can do to a car with your feel, with your steering, with your brakes, and how much tolerance that has until you get to the limit. "It just feels for now that there are different limits or the limits are in different places. That's the kind of adaptation process that's going on at the moment."

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