The Turkish Grand Prix was tough work for plenty of drivers not named Lewis Hamilton and Daniel Ricciardo was among those caught in the chaos.
While the Brit secured a record-equalling seventh world championship by storming to another win despite starting sixth on the grid, the wet conditions made life difficult for many of his rivals.
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Ricciardo has been on a hot streak of late and headed into the Turkish GP confident after claiming two podiums in his previous three races. But Renault’s race hit a snag when the Aussie and teammate Esteban Ocon got tangled up shortly after lights out.
Approaching the first corner, Ricciardo found himself sandwiched between Hamilton and Ocon and ended up clipping his comrade. The contact saw both drivers slip back in the field and they could never recover.
Ricciardo finished 10th — his worst result since the Spanish Grand Prix in August — while Ocon finished one place behind in 11th.
“We made a great start today, but I was squashed in between Lewis and Esteban into Turn 1, so I had nowhere to go and I clipped my teammate which is the last thing you want to do,” Ricciardo said.
“We lost a couple of positions from the incident and then we switched to the intermediate tyres and we just couldn’t make them last.
“There were moments during the race when I was told I was one of the fastest out there, then just a few laps later my tyres were completely gone so it was all a bit of a lottery.”
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It was a tough day for the Renaults.Source:AFP
Ocon had tyre troubles of his own which ruined his race after the auspicious start.
“It was a difficult race for us today. I got hit twice at the start and that ended our chances of scoring good points,” Ocon said.
“I was happy with my start and it was probably my best one of the year. I was third or fourth at Turn 1 and then I was unlucky to spin after Lewis got close to Daniel, who clipped my rear.
“I then got hit at Turn 9, which punctured my rear tyre and from there it was always going to be hard to recover. We did our best and we move onto the next one.”
Renault executive director Marcin Budkowski was disappointed at his team’s double failure, which allowed Racing Point and McLaren to both leapfrog the French outfit into third and fourth respectively in the constructors’ championship.
“Today’s race result is very disappointing. It was unfortunate that Daniel and Esteban touched at the start,” Budkowski said.
“Daniel looked competitive in the first part of the race, but his pace significantly deteriorated after his second stop as he struggled with his tyres. Esteban drove a solid race to finish 11th and that was the best we could have hoped for after the first lap incidents and the lack of pace with the Intermediate tyres.”
Sergio Perez was behind Hamilton in second while Sebastian Vettel (third) scored his first podium of the year for Ferrari.
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