Ricciardo admits some races with Renault "have been a bit painful"

18-10-2019 11:29
by Nicolás Quarles van Ufford
General
Ricciardo admits some races with Renault have been a bit painful

Renault star Daniel Ricciardo has admitted some of the races with his new team this season have been "a bit painful", although the Aussie added he liked how the French works team has progressed from their worst races in 2019.

The seven-time Grand Prix winner announced in the summer of 2018 he would be joining Renault for the 2019 season, leaving Aston Martin Red Bull Racing behind after a very frustrating 2018 season full of mechanical retirements.

In 2019, Ricciardo has put in some fantastic performances but Renault has overall been outperformed by midfield rivals McLaren, who are currently ahead in fourth place in the constructors' standings.

It's unlikely now Renault will retain their 'best of the rest' status from 2018, but Ricciardo is happy with how the RS19 chassis has improved since the summer break.

"Since the break, I think we've got on top of the car better," the 30-year-old told Fairfax Media ahead of last weekend's Japanese Grand Prix.

"We've had consistency on different types of tracks, but I had a penalty in Singapore, a lap-one incident in Russia … it hasn't been that smooth for us."

There have been plenty of instances where Renault couldn't get to Q3 on Saturdays while McLaren got both cars in there, with consistency being the main issue for the  2005 and 2006 champions. Although, as Ricciardo said, consistency has been better recently, the fact remains that the first half of the season was not good enough at times.

"We've had some poor races, but I feel we've learned from those. Some Sunday afternoons have been a bit painful, but we've progressed and that's enough to keep me positive and optimistic.

"I've stayed very understanding through it all and I haven't expected the moon by the next day. I'll put a bit more pressure on the team next year and expect more."

When asked what those expectations were, the Aussie said the team had targeted to "try and fight for podiums" in 2020. 

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