Ricciardo on continuous F1 qualifying struggles and failing to make Q3: “The frustrating thing is I can do it”

Daniel Ricciardo getting out of his RB car in Parc Ferme at Monaco
Photo Credit: Red Bull Content Pool
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Daniel Ricciardo has expressed his frustrations in Formula 1, where he struggles to match his RB teammate Yuki Tsunoda.

The Australian has scored a measly five points in 2024, all of which came from a fourth-place finish in the Sprint in Miami.

Ricciardo is yet to score a point in a Grand Prix, while Tsunoda has scored three consecutive points finishes, including his first points at Monaco with eighth place. 

The 34-year-old RB driver said his lack of raw speed in qualifying has been a source of frustration, especially when you consider his race pace has generally been strong.

“I definitely felt good coming into the [Monaco qualifying] session. Obviously two years ago here, I struggled with McLaren. I felt a lot better, let’s say this time around, but the reality is the result isn’t really that much better.

“I want to try and take a good look at myself and see what I’m missing and then we’ll look at what the car can give me to help me out.

“I think the frustrating thing is I can do it but it’s obviously not happening frequently enough and that’s where I’m kind of getting frustrated with myself trying to understand why it’s not consistently week in, week out being a Q3 contender.”

Daniel Ricciardo exiting the  Sainte Devote turn in Monaco
Photo Credit: Red Bull Content Pool

Ricciardo’s struggles have led to suggestions that it will open the door for RB’s Reserve Driver, Liam Lawson, who performed admirably for five Grands Prix last year, stepping in for the Australian while he was injured.

The Kiwi delivered ninth place in Singapore in 2023, but despite successive impressive drives, RB CEO Peter Bayer said he was happy with his current line-up, praising Tsunoda’s professionalism.

“I definitely believe he has made a big step forward,” he said of the 24-year-old. “It’s physical preparation, but it’s also his mental readiness to perform and deliver.

“I think he simply understood that every time he would be swearing on the radio, that would cost him a tenth. So he’s got himself under control. He’s extremely professional in the work that he’s putting into the feedback with the engineers.”

Bayer added that the team is very pleased with its race drivers, and the outfit’s full attention is on the races before the summer break.

“Currently we have two drivers in the cars. We are finding performance with the two. And we really do not discuss the 2025 situation,” he said.

“The focus is really on track and on the next couple of races until definitely the summer break.”