“It breaks you”: Ricciardo hints at struggle with inability to live up to his reputation

After a difficult qualifying session which placed him on the back of the grid, Daniel Ricciardo managed to score a points finish at the Portugal GP.

The Aussie started 16th on the grid and moved up to 11th just seven laps into the race as he took advantage of the safety car being deployed after Alfa Romeo’s Kimi Raikkonen totaled his car.

Following a tough fight for positions, Ricciardo managed to finish 9th which earned him some points after a disappointing weekend.

In the aftermath of the race, Ricciardo revealed that he did his best to get his mind off qualifying before the main event.

“It was a better race — well, better than yesterday. It was hard to do worse than yesterday so everything I planned to happen in the race or execute, I was more or less able to do,” he said.

“I certainly still woke up frustrated this morning, you’ve got to clear it from your mind. Obviously what’s done is done.

“It’s hard to shake (off). Obviously you just believe in yourself and when you know what you’re capable of and you don’t execute, it breaks you.

“We get 20-something chances a year, it’s actually not that much, so when you don’t get it right, even waiting seven days (for the next race), it’s a long time to live with it.”

Even though he was not very happy with his final position, the Aussie had to make do with what he had.

“As a driver, you know inside you when you’re driving with confidence and if it’s kind of flowing,” Ricciardo said. “And Friday (practice) did feel like that. Definitely more so than previous.

“I think today there were moments of speed and moments of not quite there but I think I took a lot from this week’s race.”

McLaren boss Zak Brown added that the mistakes Ricciardo made in qualifying overwhelmed him. Brown revealed that he told the driver that he still has time to get used to his team.

“Me and Andreas (Seidl, team principal) went to see him, and were just like, ‘Hey man, you’ve won seven grands prix, you’re awesome, you’ve got to get used to the car’,” Brown said.

“Don’t be a hero in round one and just build up to it and he’ll get there. He’s in a good spot.” he concluded.

Despite the call for being patient, Ricciardo could be way up on the grid. A testament for this is his teammate Lando Norris who finished 5th and moved 21 points ahead of the Aussie.

Currently, Norris is 3rd in the drivers’ championship and solely responsible for placing McLaren 3rd in the constructors’ standings.

Do you think Ricciardo will be able to bounce back? Let us know in the comments below!

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