Renault F1 Team expected more from the Mexican Grand Prix this weekend, said driver Nico
The Australian racer started in thirteenth position, working his way up to eighth. After passing his team-mate at the start, managing to then make his hard tyres last for a total of 50 laps.
Hülkenberg started in twelfth and finished tenth. The German appeared to be on track to finish by his team-mate in ninth but an incident with Scuderia Toro Rosso‘s Daniel Kyvat meant that he dropped to eleventh with a damaged rear wing.
Kyvat was awarded a 10-second penalty for the incident, promoting Hülkenberg back to tenth.
The German said in hindsight their chances of points may have been helped if they had decided not to pit so early.
“We definitely wanted more today, so it’s frustrating to only pick up one point. We perhaps were a little bit too keen to pit early. In the latter stages of the race I was struggling with the car a bit, trying to get in a rhythm,” said Hülkenberg.
“There’s not much to say about the final corner incident. We were running in ninth, but I had no grip, I was pushed by Daniil [Kvyat] and it doesn’t take much to spin. It was a shame as it cost us an extra point.”
Ricciardo, in contrast, was pleased to finish in the points.
“It’s good to be in the points,” said Ricciardo. ” I could have got more if I had passed Perez but I just couldn’t make it stick. I sent it into turn one, maybe a little late and the postman wasn’t there!
“We made a really strong start on the Hard tyre and that set us up for the rest of the race. It’s a solid day with both cars back in the points,” added the Australian.
Team principal Cyril Abiteboul seemed slightly deflated that the team were not able to secure a better result.
“Every weekend, it feels like the circumstances vary but the script remains the same: poor qualifying that we turn around during the race thanks to aggressive strategic choices and solid execution,” said Abiteboul.
“Today was another example, with also the benefit of the free tyre choice at the start. It could have been a bit better with Daniel racing cleanly against Pérez on one side, and Kvyat much dirtier against Nico and helping Gasly on the other side.
“That’s racing, but I prefer that we focus on ourselves. The drivers did a remarkable job to get the best from the circumstances in qualifying and then make the tyres last in the race,” he added.