Daniel Ricciardo admits that there are still some aspects that he needs to change to be fully at ease in the MCL35M car.

The 2021 season so far has brought a lot of troubles for the McLaren driver – he has needed some time to get used to the new car and he still struggles to reach the performance of his teammate Lando Norris. Ricciardo admits that this is his reality at the moment.

“I don’t want to draw a line under it, like this is definitive and this is what it is, but more often than not this year it’s been the case,” he said. “There’s still some things with the car [I have to get on top of],” he said.

“I’ll be able to put a lap together, but at this level, when everyone is obviously doing well and pretty familiar with the equipment now, it’s sometimes not enough or too often not enough.

“I think it’s just trying to extract a bit more confidence in the car through feel, and I guess that feel comes through set-up and stuff like that. But it is a bit of a sad reality for the moment.”

The Australian also reveals that the inconsistency in how the car behaves in different sections of the track creates more issues.

“I look back at Bahrain, first qualifying of the year, and I think I was P6 or something, and I was like: ‘all right, I’m only going to learn the car more and then get stronger from here.’

“But then you kind of have two steps back, and then maybe you get a good one [forward] in Barcelona. The trend is not that consistent in that sometimes the high-speed corners are good, sometimes the low speed are.

“Ultimately, it’s just been quite tricky to drive but also just to really deal with and find the limit. Some days when it’s feeling alright I’m able to push it up there and let’s say drive more on instinct. But then I think too often it’s a little bit reactive.”

In the end, Ricciardo reassures that he wants to improve the situation.

“Obviously it’s been too often that than not. But I don’t want to draw a line and be like, this is how it’s going to be forever in time. I want it to get better ASAP. But, yeah, for now, it’s slow and steady.”

Hi everyone! My name is Anton, I am 19 years old and I am an aspiring motorsports journalist. I love motorsports for those emotions and excitement it brings.