'What on earth': F1 fans in disbelief over Daniel Ricciardo disaster

·Sports Editor
·5-min read
Daniel Ricciardo, pictured here at the Monaco Grand Prix.
Daniel Ricciardo qualified 12th fastest for the Monaco Grand Prix. Image: Getty

Daniel Ricciardo was left in disbelief on Saturday after another disappointing day at the Monaco Grand Prix.

The Australian driver only managed to qualify in 12th for Sunday's race in his McLaren - seven places behind teammate Lando Norris.

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Ricciardo’s fastest lap of 1:11.598 was nearly a second slower than Norris' best time of 1:10.620, leaving the Aussie star searching for answers.

“I’m probably confused more than frustrated,” he said. 

“Obviously frustrated and upset, we know qualifying here is so big, but it’s probably got to a point where it’s not even the position now, it’s just we’ve been pretty much a second off all weekend.

“I’d like to say I’m just not confident or still need to learn the car but not a second, not around here.

"I’m certainly not being like, ‘Yeah, something is broken’, but I think we do have to have a look into maybe a bigger picture, because I refuse to believe I’m that slow around here.

“Obviously I’ve been around here with Max (Verstappen as teammate) - and I’m sure Lando’s fast - but I refuse to believe he’s a second quicker around here, and I don’t mean to say that against him.

“But just all weekend, even crossing the line a lot of laps I felt good, I was like that’s a good lap. And I think at one point I was 1.2 seconds slower than say what Lando had just done, so no answers at the moment.”

Ricciardo has enjoyed more success in Monaco than anywhere else in the world.

Daniel Ricciardo, pictured here in action during qualifying for the Monaco Grand Prix.
Daniel Ricciardo in action during qualifying for the Monaco Grand Prix. (Photo by Hasan Bratic/picture alliance via Getty Images)

The 31-year-old said his team might need to take a deep look into his car.

“Ultimately I think we’re still for some rear downforce, but even that, I feel like I’ve struggled more at previous races this year than even like the balance here,” he said.

“You always expect the car to be not perfect here, because it’s bumpy, it’s a street track, so I never felt I got too much in my head like, ‘The car’s terrible, I can’t drive it’.

“It can always be better, but again I felt there wasn’t anything fundamentally which felt (off) … Again I crossed the line and I was like, ‘Maybe I’m a tenth or two off,’ but when I heard these gaps, that’s when I was like, ‘I don’t have an answer guys, I’m sorry’.”

"I’m sure the team will do a dig and I don’t want to say that’s it or point the finger at the guys for not putting it together properly, but I’m sure we’ll give it a proper look.

“As I said, pretty much from Thursday from FP1, it was the same story. I may have taken a few steps forward, but I don’t know if I was ever within half a second, so it is a big margin.”

Fans were also left stunned by Ricciardo's struggles.

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Charles LeClerc on pole despite crash

Charles Leclerc landed pole position despite crashing out with just 16 seconds remaining.

The Ferrari driver was leading the time charts on Saturday afternoon when he hit the barriers on the exit of the swimming pool chicane and the session was stopped and did not restart.

Leclerc sustained damage to the front and side of his Ferrari and it remains to be seen if he will start Sunday's race from the front.

Leclerc could face a grid penalty if certain parts of his car need to be changed.

Red Bull's Max Verstappen finished second, with Valtteri Bottas third for Mercedes.

Carlos Sainz finished fourth in the other Ferrari, while Lewis Hamilton was down in seventh.

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Mick Schumacher did not take part in qualifying after he crashed out of final practice.

The rookie, son of seven-time world champion Michael, lost control of his Haas on the exit of Casino Square and slammed into the barriers in the closing minutes.

Schumacher, 22, sustained severe damage to the left-hand side of his car, and Haas were unable to repair his machine in time.

The young German, who will start Sunday's race at the back of the grid, appeared in tears as he was consoled by his team.

with AAP

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