Australian Formula 1 driver, Daniel Ricciardo, has had a tough start with his new driving team at Renault. His first track testing ended in a technical failure at Catalunya, Spain. It is a cruel beginning for Ricciardo’s 2019 season, after having left Red Bull at the end of last season because of recurring technical failures.
Ricciardo was on just his 28th lap of the testing run before he encountered issues while braking on a straight on the Spanish circuit. However, as he braked, the flap on the rear wing broke off, causing Ricciardo’s vehicle to spin out of control. Thankfully, he managed to control the car and avoided colliding with any barriers. Despite the issue, Ricciardo affirmed that he was reasonably happy with the car’s performance.
Ricciardo’s underwhelming 2018
The Australian driver had a season to forget last year, as he had to retire 8 times throughout the season due to issues with his car. This was the most of any driver on the grid. However, the icing on the cake for Ricciardo was when the car failed to finish the race at the Mexican Grand Prix, a race where Ricciardo held pole position. The out-of-luck Aussie driver admitted with frustration that he thought the car was cursed.
News that Ricciardo would be leaving Red Bull at the end of 2018 had been circulating for months. There were rumours that Mercedes were interested in the 7-time Grand Prix winner because of his overtaking ability. However, the rumours amounted to nothing as Lewis Hamilton and Valterri Bottas were both retained for 2019.
Will Ricciardo’s 2019 be even worse?
It’s still too early to be making reasonable predictions regarding how Ricciardo will fare this season; however, this recent setback won’t be doing him any favours. The Australian has openly admitted that he doesn’t expect to be up in the top end of the driver’s leader board, instead suggesting that Renault could mount a reasonable claim in 1-2 years.
Australian fans can only hope that Ricciardo’s move to Renault will eventually pay dividends for the young Aussie.