'Calm down': Daniel Ricciardo cops swipe from F1 rival after crash

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·Sports Reporter
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Daniel Ricciardo (pictured right) fixing his mask and (pictured left) after a crash for McLaren.
Daniel Ricciardo (pictured right) was left frustrated after crashing at the Azerbaijan Grand Prix qualifying. (Images: Fox Sports/Getty Images)

F1 veteran Fernando Alonso has taken a dig at Daniel Ricciardo and the others that crashed during a chaotic qualifying at the Azerbaijan Grand Prix as the Aussie's difficult Formula One season continued.

The Australian carried too much speed into a corner and slammed into a barrier during the second session on a day that saw four red-flag periods.

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The front of his McLaren sustained heavy damage, but Ricciardo was unharmed and will line up 13th in Sunday's race in Baku.

Ferrari's Charles Leclerc took pole position as he edged out Mercedes star Lewis Hamilton, with a frustrated Max Verstappen third for Red Bull.

Following the crashes, F1 legend Alonso admitted it was a difficult day on the track.

“It was very chaotic, it was a messy qualifying,” he said.

“Four red flags… that was difficult to get into the rhythm on the qualifying pace, on the track improvement, on the grip conditions that you get on Saturday. It’s the same for everybody, so you just try to adapt quicker.”

“I think maybe seventh or eighth was possible, but it is what it is.”

But Alonso then took a swipe at the drivers for being overzealous during a difficult day.

“(It’s) unfair probably that the people that crashed, they repair the car and they start in that position tomorrow,” Alonso said.

Alpine's driver Fernando Alonso attends a press conference ahead of the Formula One Azerbaijan Grand Prix at the Baku City Circuit in Baku on June 3, 2021.
Alpine's driver Fernando Alonso attends a press conference ahead of the Formula One Azerbaijan Grand Prix at the Baku City Circuit in Baku on June 3, 2021. (Photo by Francois Nel / POOL / AFP) (Photo by FRANCOIS NEL/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

“All the other cars, we are in parc ferme until tomorrow, we cannot touch the car, so why they can change all the parts that they caused the red flag? Maybe one day we are in that position and we take advantage of the rule.

“I think the people need to calm down a little bit and drive 98 per cent in a street circuit because if you crash and you start last in the race, maybe you don’t drive over your possibilities.

“And I think today with so many people driving over the possibilities of their car or their abilities.”

Verstappen hits out at qualifying

Third placed qualifier Max Verstappen hit out at the 'chaotic' qualifying day,

"It was just a stupid qualifying to be honest," said Verstappen, who is four points clear of Hamilton after five races.

Leclerc owed some of his time of one minute 41.218 seconds to Hamilton, whose car provided a hefty aerodynamic 'tow' down the long straight.

"I think it's going to be difficult to keep these two behind me," he added of the title frontrunners.

Hamilton has a record 100 pole positions but his placing still came as a surprise, with Mercedes struggling for pace through practice and Red Bull on top.

"This is such a monumental result for us because we've been struggling like you couldn't believe all weekend," said the Briton, who was only 11th in opening practice.

"We've moved around, made so many changes, over these two days. Just chasing our tail and it's been so difficult."

Third placed qualifier Max Verstappen of Red Bull Racing looks on in parc ferme during qualifying ahead of the F1 Grand Prix of Azerbaijan at Baku City Circuit on June 05, 2021 in Baku, Azerbaijan.
Third placed qualifier Max Verstappen of Red Bull Racing looks on in parc ferme during qualifying ahead of the F1 Grand Prix of Azerbaijan at Baku City Circuit on June 05, 2021 in Baku, Azerbaijan. (Photo by Maxim Shemetov - Pool/Getty Images)

The first phase of qualifying was twice stopped, with Canadian Lance Stroll smashing his Aston Martin into the barriers at turn 15 and Alfa Romeo's Antonio Giovinazzi following minutes later.

Ricciardo then crashed his McLaren after locking up at turn three in the second phase, bringing out the red flags for the third time.

That crash left Aston Martin's Sebastian Vettel cursing his misfortune in 11th place after being denied the chance to go faster.

The final crash involved Sainz and AlphaTauri's Yuki Tsunoda.

Tsunoda's team mate Pierre Gasly starts fourth with Sainz qualified in fifth and McLaren's Lando Norris sixth on a street circuit with a reputation for drama.

Norris was summoned to stewards afterwards for failing to return to the pits immediately red flags were waved, and was handed a three place grid drop - less than the normal five - with three penalty points.

"Just chaos really," Norris said of the session.

with AAP

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