F1 fans left fuming over 'disgraceful' Daniel Ricciardo controversy

  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
·Sports Editor
·4-min read
In this article:
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
Daniel Ricciardo, pictured here behind McLaren teammate Lando Norris.
Daniel Ricciardo was ordered not to overtake McLaren teammate Lando Norris. Image: Getty

Daniel Ricciardo was at the centre of controversy in the Azerbaijan Grand Prix after team orders prevented him from overtaking McLaren teammate Lando Norris early in the race.

Max Verstappen extended his championship lead by winning Sunday's race after Charles Leclerc retired from the lead with an engine failure.

'VERY BAD': Formula One star caught in the act with another woman

REVEALED: Daniel Ricciardo spills secret message on driver helmet

Leclerc seemed poised to challenge for the win, but the Monaco driver's car started spewing smoke on lap 20 of 51 and he had to pull into the pits.

It was his second retirement in three races.

Aussie star Ricciardo, who has been struggling most of the season, finished eighth in his McLaren for just his second top-10 finish of the year.

However it could have been even better for Ricciardo had he not been dudded by controversial team orders early in the race.

Starting in 12th place, Ricciardo made a scintillating start and found himself in fifth.

The Aussie was putting pressure on Norris in P4 and wanted to overtake his teammate, but was ordered to back off.

“If this is his best pace, I’ve got more,” Ricciardo said on team radio.

“If I sit behind any longer I’m going to get eaten up by (Pierre) Gasly."

Norris eventually pitted and Ricciardo moved up, but not before he'd been overtaken by Gasly and Lewis Hamilton.

Lando Norris and Daniel Ricciardo, pictured here during the Azerbaijan Grand Prix.
Lando Norris and Daniel Ricciardo battle it out during the Azerbaijan Grand Prix. (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)

Sky Sports commentator Paul di Resta said: “Holding up Daniel Ricciardo didn’t pay off for McLaren.

“What could Daniel have done if he’d been let loose on the hard tyre when that was the faster tyre at the beginning.”

Ricciardo eventually finished one spot ahead of Norris, with the young Brit also receiving orders late in the race not to overtake his teammate.

“Of course it’s a race and I want to finish eighth,” Norris said afterwards.

“The end was just racing for pure position. It’s not like he let me go or whatever.

“I understand that but at the same time we’re here to race. I think we know that. I’m not going to say anything because it’s fair I think what we did.

“Just to end the race, you want to race to finish. It wouldn’t have mattered if it’s eighth or ninth but as a driver you just want to be that further ahead position.”

Daniel Ricciardo, pictured here in action at the Azerbaijan Grand Prix.
Daniel Ricciardo in action at the Azerbaijan Grand Prix. (Photo by OZAN KOSE/AFP via Getty Images)

F1 world left fuming over Daniel Ricciardo farce

F1 fans and commentators weren't impressed by the controversial scenes, with many of the belief that Ricciardo could have finished higher had he not been ordered to back off in the early stages.

Motorsport writer Michael Lamonato commented on Twitter: “Keeping Ricciardo behind Norris despite being faster now makes no sense - doubly so given he’s on a different strategy.”

Others described the decision as "disgraceful" and "ridiculous".

Verstappen had passed Sergio Perez shortly before Leclerc's failure and the reigning F1 champion cruised to his fifth win of the season.

Red Bull went 1-2 in the race with Perez finishing second, while Mercedes were third and fourth with George Russell and Lewis Hamilton.

Perez, who won in Azerbaijan last year, said Red Bull made the "right call" not to let him fight Verstappen for the win and said he struggled with worn tyres.

Ferrari had a terrible day as both Leclerc and teammate Carlos Sainz failed to finish, as did the Ferrari-powered cars of Zhou Guanyu and Kevin Magnussen.

It was the first time since the Italian Grand Prix in 2020 that the Ferrari team had to retire both cars.

with AAP

Click here to sign up to our newsletter for all the latest and breaking stories from Australia and around the world.

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting