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Ricciardo was keen to halt Hulkenberg's early-season confidence

  • Published on 20 Dec 2019 09:55
  • comments 3
  • By: Dieter Rencken & Fergal Walsh

Daniel Ricciardo says he eager to stop Nico Hulkenberg gaining too much confidence in their intra-team battle early on in the 2019 season.

The two formed Renault's driver line-up this year, with Ricciardo joining the team after spending five years at Red Bull, where he picked up seven race wins.

The Australian made the surprising call to switch to the Enstone squad in search of a new challenge, pairing up with Hulkenberg, who was at Renault since 2017.

MOREOcon not disappointed to miss out on 2020 Mercedes seat

Despite the difficult year for the French manufacturer, which saw it end the constructors' championship in fifth place, Ricciardo affirms that he never stooped to a point where he regretted his decision to leave Red Bull. 

"I never actually got to the point where I thought 'what have I done?'. At the start of the year, after Bahrain, I was a bit down," Ricciardo admitted. 

"Albeit, it was only the second race of the year, but I was more down on my performance. It's not that easy to bring this car up. 

"I think the reality of me reaching my potential in a car that was difficult, at times I was like 'this isn't going to be as easy as I thought'."

However, Ricciardo soon picked up confidence as he eased himself into his new team, stating that he wanted to stop the more experienced midfield driver of Hulkenberg gaining too much momentum.

"But then a couple of weeks later in Shanghai, that was a good weekend, it was a best of the rest weekend. So it quickly turned around. 

"After Bahrain, it didn't get to a point where I was questioning it, but more myself," Ricciardo said. "With Nico alongside me, he's experienced, he's been in the midfield pack for a long time. 

"I could already see that and I thought 'I can't let him build too much confidence early' because it's just going to get harder for me. So I was aware I had to figure it out quickly."

MOREGPToday.net's 2019 F1 driver rankings - #9 - Daniel Ricciardo | GPToday.net's 2019 F1 driver rankings - #12 - Nico Hulkenberg

Replies (3)

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  • Dert38

    Posts: 150

    Le coq sportif...

    • + 0
    • Dec 20 2019 - 12:50
  • Ricciardo didn't get enough credit for his performance this year. I understand why though..
    Renault tends to do that to drivers. But people seem to forget how often Ricciardo beat the McLaren or at least one of them. For the midfield it's like when Max beat a Ferrari or a Mercedes. Ricciardo is as good as ever. I like that Daniel left Red Bull, but I honestly don't think Renault will get back to performing at the top any time soon

    • + 0
    • Dec 21 2019 - 05:44
    • But man, Red Bull this year with Ricciardo though! I really agree that the chance of them getting P2 was pretty high, had Ric stayed, and I kinda think he is a wasted talent at Renault.

      • + 0
      • Dec 22 2019 - 07:49

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  • Team Renault
  • Points 772
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  • Grand Prix 102
  • Country AU
  • Date of b. Jul 1 1989 (30)
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  • Weight 64 kg
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Formula 1 Calendar - 2019

Date
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Spain
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Spain
15 - Mar 17 2019
Australia
29 - Mar 31 2019
Bahrain
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Bahrain
12 - Apr 14 2019
China
26 - Apr 28 2019
Azerbaijan
10 - May 12 2019
Spain
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Spain
23 - May 26 2019
Monaco
7 - Jun 9 2019
Canada
21 - Jun 23 2019
France
28 - Jun 30 2019
Austria
12 - Jul 14 2019
United Kingdom
26 - Jul 28 2019
Germany
2 - Aug 4 2019
Hungary
30 - Sep 1 2019
Belgium
6 - Sep 8 2019
Italy
20 - Sep 22 2019
Singapore
27 - Sep 29 2019
Russian
11 - Oct 13 2019
Japan
25 - Oct 27 2019
Mexico
1 - Nov 3 2019
United States of America
15 - Nov 17 2019
Brazil
29 - Dec 1 2019
United Arab Emirates
-
United Arab Emirates
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Formula 1 Calendar - 2019

Date
Grand Prix & Circuit
15 - Mar 17 2019
Australia Albert Park
29 - Mar 31 2019
12 - Apr 14 2019
26 - Apr 28 2019
Azerbaijan Baku City Circuit
10 - May 12 2019
23 - May 26 2019
Monaco Monte Carlo
7 - Jun 9 2019
21 - Jun 23 2019
France Paul Ricard
28 - Jun 30 2019
Austria Red Bull Ring
12 - Jul 14 2019
United Kingdom Silverstone
26 - Jul 28 2019
Germany Hockenheimring
2 - Aug 4 2019
Hungary Hungaroring
30 - Sep 1 2019
6 - Sep 8 2019
Italy Monza
20 - Sep 22 2019
27 - Sep 29 2019
Russian Sochi Autodrom
11 - Oct 13 2019
25 - Oct 27 2019
1 - Nov 3 2019
United States of America Circuit of the Americas
15 - Nov 17 2019
Brazil Interlagos
29 - Dec 1 2019
United Arab Emirates Yas Marina Circuit
-
United Arab Emirates Yas Marina Circuit
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