The brutal blunder that cost Ricciardo a podium spot in Spain

Daniel Ricciardo recorded the fastest lap during the Spanish Grand Prix, but a bizarre blunder cost him a spot on the podium.

Ricciardo failed to fire in Barcelona on Sunday, finishing fifth as Lewis Hamilton cruised to victory.

The Aussie never really threatened the leading pack, which puzzled fans considering his relatively good speed throughout the race.

And the reason for his mediocre finish was revealed after the race, with a huge error coming to light that wasn’t originally broadcast on TV.

Ricciardo was only a couple of seconds off the battle for third place when the Virtual Safety Car was called out on Lap 41 because of a mechanical issue with Esteban Ocon’s Force India car.

Ricciardo was chasing Verstappen before his error. Image: Getty

But during the Safety Car conditions, Ricciardo inexplicably spun out going around a simple corner.

“I actually had a spin on the restart,” Ricciardo confessed after the race.

“(I was) struggling to keep these tyres warm.

“Fortunately there were no walls, like (Romain) Grosjean found in Baku, but it put me in no-man’s land.”

The broadcast didn’t initially pick up the incident during the race, but video emerged after Red Bull team boss Christian Horner revealed his star’s indiscretion.

“He had a sneaky spin that the cameras didn’t pick up,” Horner said.

“He dropped about 12 seconds to that pack at that point — but you could see his pace in clear air at the end there.”

Ricciardo said he struggled with his car despite recording the fastest lap of the race by over six tenths of a second in the closing stages.

“It was a bit on a knife edge,” he said. “It was fast when you were able to put it all together but it wasn’t easy; it was easy to make mistakes.

“It felt like if you got lucky you could put in a blistering lap. Probably one out of five I could make it happen, the four other laps I was sliding and struggling to stay on.

“Fast, but not with the ease to be able to do it for consistent laps for the whole race.”