Ricciardo: I was just a passenger

Daniel Ricciardo on track at the Russian GP 2019

Daniel Ricciardo has remained resolute despite a premature race exit at the Russian GP in Sochi.

The Australian was determined for an improved weekend after a technical infringement in Singapore relegated the Aussie to the back of the grid, a late-race puncture ending the Renault driver's charge through the field.

Unfortunately, Russia was not on Ricciardo’s side, despite an otherwise respectable qualifying session resulting in a P10 start, the Aussie found himself clashing with Afla Romeo’s Antonio Giovinazzi and Haas driver Romain Grosjean on the first lap.

The contact between the trio saw Grosjean crash out, Giovinazzi in need of a new front wing and Ricciardo limping back to the pits with tyre and floor damage.

The Australian was able to make a short pit stop under safety car conditions but was forced to retire due to severe floor damage on lap 24.

“Unfortunately, our race was pretty much over from the start. I had too much damage on the car to carry on, which is a shame. It was a bit chaotic through Turn 2 and I had the inside line for Turn 4 where I thought I was safe.” The Australian said after the race.

“I got hit and had a puncture and damage to the floor. I’ll look at it with the perspective that if I qualify higher up the grid then I’m less likely to be in the bad stuff. 

“I’ll take responsibility for that, but in terms of the accident, I was just a passenger.”

The race was won by championship leader Lewis Hamilton, following by Mercedes teammate Valtteri Bottas and Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc. 

Ricciardo next returns to the track at the Japanese Grand Prix on 11-13 October.

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