Ricciardo optimistic after ‘pretty flawless’ Barcelona running

Henry Valantine
Daniel Ricciardo smiles in an interview. Barcelona February 2022.

Daniel Ricciardo cracks a smile as he is interviewed after shakedown running. Barcelona February 2022.

Daniel Ricciardo was feeling positive after a solid week of running for himself and McLaren in Barcelona over the course of the week.

The Australian completed 212 laps of the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya in his time in the MCL36 through the course of the week, and McLaren’s running appeared to run without a hitch, completing the third-most laps of anyone as they got to grips with the sport’s new regulations.

Ricciardo was in the car on an afternoon that saw the track surface wetted, to give Pirelli a chance to gather data on their wet and intermediate tyres, and the Australian was pleased to have that experience.

On top of that, he feels that the positivity of the three days in Spain can provide a good platform for him heading forwards.

“It was good to get a little bit of wet running, there was quite a lot to learn from that,” he said. “We then got into a different programme to yesterday where we racked up plenty of laps, which was really productive.

“Now it’s about giving that information back to the team and trying to build on this positive start.

“I think we’re in a good spot, but there’s always something to work on and improve. So, we’ll give the team some data to work with and some areas of work to do, I’ll focus on what I can keep doing better.

“Overall, a pretty flawless three days for the team, a really awesome start to the season. Thanks to everyone back at MTC for putting the hard work in over the winter to put us in this position.”

On the other side of the garage, Lando Norris also racked up plenty of laps of Barcelona in his new machinery, and he was pleased to get comfortable with his car quickly.

He had pointed out earlier in the week that this year’s heavier models felt slightly “sluggish” compared to their predecessors, but he’s been able to understand how the new generation work.


“It’s been a good week and start to the year,” said Norris. “Many things have gone well. Of course, a couple of problems here and there but we’ve got through a lot of our test programmes, and we’ve understood the car more.

“As a driver, I’ve been able to get comfortable with the car nice and quickly. Our focus now moves onto learning and reviewing everything we put together and tested, to try to make progress going into Bahrain, and make sure we’re ready for the first race of the season.”


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