Daniel Ricciardo has said he is afraid of getting too excited about the Monaco Grand Prix given the fact that there won’t be many fans there.
The race in Monte Carlo is traditionally one of – if not the – biggest events on the Formula 1 calendar as people from all over the world travel there to attend it.
That won’t be the case this year though with the global pandemic forcing the number of people that can go to be hugely limited.
Because of that, Ricciardo is trying not to get too carried away about what is usually one of his favourites races of the season.
“The track itself is so intense, that will always be a 10 out of 10. I am so excited to go there, but I am a bit scared to not get too excited,” he said as per the BBC.
“We will have some fans, which is a start. The build-up, kind of walking through the crowd and fans to get into the pit lane, into your car – it’s already kind of chaotic before you get into the car, so your heart rate is already up and the circuit’s going to do the rest for you. So maybe there will be a little bit more calm before the storm.
“[But] the whole aura of the boats and everyone and people on the track at the end of the day drinking and partying – not having that to that level will probably feel a little empty.
“But for the in-car stuff, I think we’ll probably be OK.”
— Mercedes-AMG PETRONAS F1 Team (@MercedesAMGF1) May 26, 2019
Ricciardo has one win to his name in Monaco after prevailing in 2018, but should really have two.
After claiming pole position, he was leading the 2016 race before a pit-stop error from Red Bull saw him lose out to Lewis Hamilton.
Like back then, Ricciardo’s old team look set to challenge Hamilton and Mercedes again this year, having a pretty evenly matched car to the German team for the first time in the hybrid era.
Despite that, Hamilton has still managed to fight off Max Verstappen and co to win three of the first four races, and Ricciardo thinks that by doing so, the Brit is proving his doubters wrong.
“A lot of people are probably tipping their hat to Lewis,” the McLaren man added.
“He is getting it dished back at him and holding his ground and showing people who maybe doubted him why he is as good as he is.”
Ricciardo will be in a new-look car for the race after McLaren revealed a special Gulf-inspired livery for it.