McLaren Reveal Why Norris Outperformed Ricciardo At Bahrain

Daniel Ricciardo finished his debut race with McLaren in P7.

Daniel Ricciardo and Lando Norris at 2021 Bahrain GP with McLaren -

McLaren have revealed why Daniel Ricciardo struggled in his debut race with the Woking-based team and offered an explanation as to why he was outpaced by team-mate Lando Norris by a bigger-than-expected margin.

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Ricciardo qualified in P6 for the 2021 Bahrain Grand Prix, one position ahead of Norris.

However, the Aussie finished the race in seventh, while Norris worked his way up to a very strong P4 finish.

Speaking after his debut race, Ricciardo said he “struggled quite a bit” as he “couldn’t really extract the pace” from his McLaren.

“If I just focus on the race itself, I struggled quite a bit in the race actually,” Ricciardo said.

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“I couldn’t really extract the pace from the car and when I did I could do it for one or two laps and then it would quickly drop off again.

“I struggled then with the tyres and the balance. I just didn’t feel like I had a good race performance, race package.

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“Obviously, it’s still new to me so I’m sure there is going to be a lot of homework for me to do personally to keep getting better and I made plenty of notes through the race of what I feel [in] the car and what was holding me back.

“I’ll give feedback, I’m sure they will give feedback to me and we will come to Imola in better shape but I think if seventh is a poor race, call it that, we’re looking alright.”

McLaren explained that a collision with Pierre Gasly early on in the race caused Ricciardo’s car to lose a “considerable” amount of rear downforce – and this offers an explanation as to why he was outpaced by Norris by a bigger-than-expected margin.

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“Post-race we found damage to Daniel’s floor from the impact of Pierre running into the back of his car at the beginning of the race,” McLaren team principal Andreas Seidl said.

“The level of damage cost a considerable amount of downforce. 

“Despite the performance loss Daniel used his experience to cope with the issues and score important points for the team. We now look forward to the next race.”

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