Daniel Ricciardo has had a difficult start to life as a McLaren driver, with him being comprehensively outperformed by his less experienced team-mate, Lando Norris, at most of the grand prix contested so far this season.
Speaking after the Austrian Grand Prix, Ricciardo admitted that it had been an “unexpected and difficult” season thus far, and said the results haven’t been good enough despite him feeling more at home in the car.
“I feel like it’s obviously for whatever reason been a very unexpected and difficult season so far, just from a pace point of view,” Ricciardo said in an interview with Motorsport.com.
“And I guess the easiest way for me to kind of move forward is to accept that. Did I expect more? Absolutely.
“But I think if I every weekend go into it now expecting to be quicker than Lando, or whatever it is, I’m probably just going to end up resenting the sport, because clearly it’s going to take a bit more.
“Clearly there’s something that is missing. I feel good in the car, especially the last three weeks, it’s felt better.
“I don’t want to say, what’s the word, wave the white flag, or succumb to whatever it is, I’m just going to not really focus or lose too much energy on that, and just accept that he’s driving very well.
“The aim is to obviously get closer, and help the team out as well.”
Earlier, McLaren team principal Andreas Seidl admitted that they were disappointed with Ricciardo’s pace as they had expected him to be more competitive at this stage of the season.
“I don’t think he imagined it would be so difficult to change teams,” Seidl said.
“He’s disappointed, so are we. Because we thought he would be faster.
“I am still convinced that at some point it will click with him,” the German added.