Bahrain GP: McLaren F1 Explain Daniel Ricciardo’s Poor Pace

Published 03/30/2021, 4:56 AM EDT
Formula One F1 – Bahrain Grand Prix – Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir, Bahrain – March 27, 2021 McLaren’s Daniel Ricciardo in action during qualifying REUTERS/Hamad I Mohammed


The Bahrain Grand Prix portrayed incredibly close racing amongst the mid-field pack, with McLaren driver, Lando Norris, leading the way in P4. However, Daniel Ricciardo, who was expected to be much faster than the Briton, ended up struggling for pace throughout the race, as he saw the chequered flag in P7.

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This left the fans wondering if Norris was actually faster than his newly recruited Australian teammate. Well, turns out, Ricciardo had suffered significant damages to the floor of his car, as early as lap 4 of the race.

This has everything to do with the incident with Pierre Gasly. The Frenchman was trailing the McLaren driver when things went a tad out of hand going into the tricky turn 5.

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Formula One F1 – Bahrain Grand Prix – Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir, Bahrain – March 28, 2021, McLaren’s Daniel Ricciardo kneels in support of the Black Lives Matter campaign on the grid before the race REUTERS/Hamad I Mohammed

The AlphaTauri driver failed to brake on time as he clipped his car into the rear-end of the McLaren, wrecking his front wing and the floor. His race was pretty compromised due to that incident.

Unfortunately for Ricciardo, he, too, couldn’t escape the collision unscathed, according to Andreas Seidl. Apparently, Ricciardo had to cope with a significant loss of downforce throughout the race. Thankfully, he was able to keep the car in good shape and secured a pivotal 6 points.

Daniel Ricciardo used his experience to secure P7: McLaren

As reported by RacingNews365, Andreas Seidl, McLaren’s team principal, opened up how Ricciardo’s floor had significant damages. Hence, he applauded the driver for bringing the car home in P7 despite the loss in downforce on such a demanding circuit.

Post-race, we found damage to Daniel’s floor from the impact of Pierre running into the back of his car at the beginning of the race,” he said.

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Formula One F1 – Bahrain Grand Prix – Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir, Bahrain – March 27, 2021 McLaren’s Daniel Ricciardo before practice REUTERS/Hamad I Mohammed

The level of damage cost a considerable amount of downforce. Despite the performance loss, Daniel used his experience to cope with the issues and score important points for the team. We now look forward to the next race.”

McLaren are looking quite strong with the powerful Mercedes engine at the back. Furthermore, with no pressure from their rivals, Ferrari and Aston Martin, the Papaya team are currently on a no-man’s-land.

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But will the rivals soon catch up? Will the fans be able to witness a close fight for P3 on the constructor’s table? Only time will tell.

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Rohit Kumar

906 articles

Rohit Kumar is an F1 author at EssentiallySports. He has been an ardent follower of the racing series since 2007, with his love for the sport coinciding with his love for Kimi Raikkonen. He is also an ardent follower of Sebastian Vettel and Aston Martin Racing.

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