Last week in Spain, after a tough start to the season, Daniel Ricciardo seemed to be more confident than ever with McLaren. Team principal Andreas Seidl thinks that this will allow better and faster development of the MCL35M.
McLaren is currently in a very tight battle against Ferrari for P3 in the Constructors’ championship. For now, the British team still has a tiny advantage of 5 points over their Italian rivals but Scuderia seems to strengthen at each race weekend.
If the Woking-based team wants to stay in a realistic fight against Ferrari, they will need to bring good upgrades for as long as possible in the season. A very experienced Ricciardo will definitely be a major asset to achieve their goals.
Since the beginning of the season, the Australian driver did not seem to feel at ease behind the wheel of his MCL35M. However, the 31-year-old thinks he has done a “breakthrough” in Spain, where he finished the race in P6, in front of his teammate for the first time this year.
Seidl shares this opinion and adds that even though the Australian is not exactly where he wants to be, the more confidence Ricciardo will build, the more helpful he will become for further development of the car.
“We are not there yet where we want to be, where Daniel wants to be but as I said many times I’m 100 percent convinced it’s just a matter of more races, and then we will see performance as we are used to from Daniel,” Seidl said.
“For sure one reason why we wanted to get Daniel on board was because he obviously has a lot of experience and he knows what he needs as a driver from the car in order to go fast.”
“As a team boss what I need is simply two drivers that are pushing each other, that are pushing the other cars on track. Because if you want to stay in this fight in the constructors’ championship, you need to have always two cars being there, with two drivers being always in position to score good points.”
“And therefore I’m really looking forward to the race weekends where he feels really comfortable with the car because then I think we will see the real benefit not just in terms of speed but also in terms of his experience helping us to keep developing the car further together with Lando.”