Daniel Ricciardo said that his appearance in the top 10 at the British Grand Prix felt “positive” after two successive Formula 1 races without a point.
Ricciardo lost his points finish at the French Grand Prix through two post-race time penalties for rejoining the track unsafely and gaining a lasting advantage by leaving the track, and could only manage twelfth in Austria as the Renault F1 Team slumped back towards the midfield.
Seventh place at Silverstone shows promise for the upgraded Renault package, introduced at the French GP last month, but both Ricciardo and team-mate Nico Hülkenberg finished behind the lead Renault-powered McLaren F1 Team car of Carlos Sainz Jr. – who managed sixth place in Sunday’s race.
Ricciardo enjoyed a close battle with the second McLaren of Lando Norris at the start, before staying in close contact with Sainz Jr. from the midway stage of the 52-lap race to the end.
“All in all, I think it was a good race,” said Ricciardo.
“Initially, I thought my start wasn’t bad but Lando just managed to get me after some clean racing.
“We got him back on the undercut but then the Safety Car played into Carlos’ hands with a free pit-stop and that was a bit frustrating.
“It was unlucky on our part but we hunted him down towards the end but couldn’t mount a real attack to get past.”
Seventh and tenth place at the British GP means that Renault’s deficit to McLaren increases by a solitary point in the race for fourth place in the Constructors’ Championship, but the French marque now has a 13-point buffer to sixth placed team Alfa Romeo Racing.
Ricciardo said that the improvement in long and short run pace is encouraging for Renault and admitted that this result would have been very welcome after the turmoil of Austria.
“It feels positive to be back in the top ten especially after the last two rounds,” he added.
“Our single-lap and race pace has certainly been a solid turnaround in a short period of time. Looking back to two weeks ago, we’d have taken this result.”