Daniel Ricciardo believes he can build on his momentum and end his struggles with McLaren after achieving a “definitely needed” boost in performance in France.
Ricciardo has had trouble getting to grips with his new car after switching teams from Renault over the winter, but he conjured a “solid” weekend in Paul Ricard to deliver arguably his best performance of the season so far.
Ricciardo said: “I think from the start of the weekend it was just a little bit more of a traditional weekend, we just got onto the front foot and we stayed there. It wasn’t an immaculate weekend, but it was solid.
“I think it was certainly what I was looking for after Monaco and Baku, so it was definitely needed. I think the race was just fun, from our position, to be able to force our way a bit further into the top 10 and have some battles. That was cool.
“Ultimately, there are still some things to work on but it was definitely progress and right now I’m going to take that.”
Ricciardo seeking triple-header momentum
Sunday’s Styrian Grand Prix at the Red Bull Ring is the eighth race of the season and the middle of a triple-header that started in France last weekend and will end at the Red Bull Ring again next Sunday, with the Austrian Grand Prix.
There has now been an astonishing 24 races in 52 weeks, but Ricciardo does not want things to slow down and feels the triple header is the perfect opportunity to get more points on the board.
“I love it,” said Ricciardo. “Yes, it’s tiring, and I also love weekends off, but this triple-header I’m really excited and I think actually staying in a rhythm is kind of nice, to be able to compete on a regular basis is good.
“I think, competing, if you have a good race, you want to do another one the week after to try to keep it going and if you have a bad race, you want to go again the week after to make up for it. There’s always an excuse to want to compete.”