Daniel Ricciardo suffered a miserable Spanish Grand Prix, after what was a promising Saturday afternoon at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya.
The Australian, who started ninth, finished the race in twelfth place behind his ill team-mate.
The McLaren F1 Team brought a number of upgrades to the Spanish venue, which all worked as expected according to the team.
Ricciardo after the race explained the troubles he faced during the race, and how he was “nowhere”.
“It was felt early on,” began Ricciardo.
“I got up to eighth on lap one, obviously there was a few things going on around me, I remember Hamilton getting a puncture or something on the first lap. So we were a relatively good track position.
“But already from lap three, I knew that I was going to be doing some defending pretty soon,” he explained.
“Then of course we knew it was two or three stops so I thought, okay, maybe we’ll pit, get a bit more pace on a different set of tyres. And no, we were kind of nowhere from the start to the end.”
Ricciardo like most of the field ran a three-stop strategy, in a race which he called “one of the longer ones I’ve had in recent times.”
He saw himself drop out of the points in what was an incredible tight midfield battle, on what was a scorching hot afternoon in the Spanish Sun.
The Australian told the media after the race that he “had no fight”, after suffering from grip problems throughout the Grand Prix.
“It wasn’t like there was a slow stint,” Ricciardo continued.
“It was a slow race from the start, but one where I just couldn’t basically couldn’t use any grip. And if I tried to use it, I was just sliding and slow.”
“I tried to be conservative on the tyres and I just had to drive too slow to do that.
“[The car] simply was operating on a lower level of grip than everyone. I’m sure everyone complained because it’s hot and we [had] poor track conditions in terms of the heat.”
McLaren team principal Andreas Seidl, was disappointed after the race and is keen to understand what the issue was.
“We need more time to analyse and understand why he was going backwards really from the first lap onwards and also then going to a different specification, tyre compound didn’t change the situation. That’s something we need to analyse and try to get on top of.” Seidl said.
With Lando Norris finishing in the points, Ricciardo is hoping the team will find something wrong with the car.
The Australian is hoping for a reason as to why his pace was so poor, after feeling “probably a second” slower.
“There’s always little bits here and there. But to be honest I hope to find something else.
“I hope that it’s, ‘oh, wow, this was wrong’ or ‘this was something,’ because when there’s set-up and stuff you could say, ‘oh, there’s a couple of tenths.’
“I haven’t seen the times yet but I know that I was just slow really,” Ricciardo admitted.
“So I’m sure at times I was probably a second, if not more slower. So it felt more than set-up.
“So hopefully there’s something because obviously I’m experienced enough now to try throughout the race different things and try to push on the tyre, try to be conservative and approach the corners in different ways.
“But the net lap time by the end was the same each time I crossed the line, whether I’d use the tyres or not. So it was one of those ones where you’re just kind of scratching your head.”