Canadian GP 2022: Daniel Ricciardo considered going out on “slick tires” in qualifying

Daniel Ricciardo considered following in George Russell's footsteps in trying the slick tires.

Daniel Ricciardo
Daniel Ricciardo considered following in George Russell's footsteps in trying the slick tires.
FirstSportz News

Yesterday’s qualifying session took place under wet conditions. The chief surprise of the session was that Fernando Alonso qualified second, securing his first front row start since Germany in 2012. Of course, by Q3, the track had started to dry up enough to have a slight dry line, but there were still significant wet patches. It was one of these that proved to be George Russell’s bane.

George Russell elected to go out on the soft tires to try and gain an advantage, but it did not particularly end well for him. The British driver tried to replicate something like he had done in Sochi last year, where he qualified third. But on turn 2 of the lap, he apparently had no grip, and went rear first into the barriers, albeit at a slow speed.

McLaren’s Daniel Ricciardo, who is starting just behind Russell on the grid at 9th, was at one point also tempted to make the switch to dry tires and try to take advantage of the dry line, but as quoted by GPFans, he abandoned that particular idea, dismissing it as ‘desperate’. That was probably wise, considering how George Russell’s experiment went.

On being asked if he had considered going out on slicks like George Russell, Ricciardo responded:

“Obviously, it was a thought. I knew already after Q2 that I could see the dry line appearing, so as soon as I got back to the garage I said ‘It’s going to be close here. Let’s be ready in case somebody goes on it’.”

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Ricciardo was ‘tempted to take a risk’

Daniel Ricciardo
Daniel Ricciardo

Ricciardo said that the circuit was not completely dry, and had numerous wet patches, which is always the risk when switching from wet to dry tires.

“You’re obviously tempted to use the tire in the dry parts and you will go quicker than an inter, but there is also the reality of surviving on some of these other parts of the track.”

Ricciardo had almost been driven to trying on slick tires due to a lack of pace early in Q3: “I knew we weren’t that quick in the first part of Q3 and I was tempted to take a risk, but also, you have to be calculated and it still felt it was a little bit too desperate for that.”

Meanwhile, his teammate, Lando Norris qualified 14th, after suffering a power unit problem. The team was unable to fix the issue, and as such, Norris could not compete in Q2. Norris conceded that being knocked out due to a technical issue was frustrating.

“To be out with a technical problem is always frustrating, especially when it is in conditions like that.”

“We feel like we lost out a little bit. Maybe there wasn’t a lot of pace in the car. Whether it would have been just eighth, ninth, 10th, around where Daniel was, we probably couldn’t have achieved a lot more but at least to be out there and driving is always the main thing.”

McLaren will hope that Norris displays more pace in the race and can climb his way into the points. Ricciardo may also have a chance to get more points during the race. The Haas duo, who have the third locked out, have been slightly vulnerable during the races. If their reliability falters again, or their pace falls off, Ricciardo is certainly in with a chance for a solid haul of points. A potential safety car may also throw a spanner into the works, as it always does.

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