The Mclaren F1 Team to start from second and third at the Italian Grand Prix, after magical sprint qualifying for Daniel Ricciardo and Lando Norris.
Daniel Ricciardo will start the Italian Grand Prix from the front row alongside former team-mate Max Verstappen, after finishing third in the second trial of sprint qualifying. Ricciardo who started the sprint at the Autodromo Nazionale di Monza in fifth, made a perfect start and elevated himself up to third by the first corner.
Ricciardo was lucky to get through the first corner without a puncture, Pierre Gasly’s front wing made contact with Ricciardo’s rear, leading to an immediate retirement for the Scuderia AlphaTauri Honda driver.
From then on it was a cruise for Ricciardo who inherits a second place start for Sunday’s race, with sprint winner Valtteri Bottas to start from last after taking an engine penalty. Ricciardo is very happy to be back at the front and is ready to convert Saturday’s performance into a strong haul of points on Sunday.
“It’s really nice to be up there. We had a good start, that was important, but I knew we could. Our starts have been great all year, so we had the potential. I tried to get Max [Verstappen] in Turn One. I had a really good run – I was able to brake quite late, but he also had a decent run into the turn, so I tried to hang on the outside and then I could see that I was running out of room, so I had to come out of it.
“I think that’s where I got hit from behind. That’s just one of those situations but obviously I’m sorry for Pierre [Gasly]. It was nice to gain a couple of positions, and then we settled into a rhythm. I didn’t have the pace to keep Valtteri [Bottas] and Max in sight, but at least I was pulling away from the others. It was a lonely but happy third and a front row tomorrow. It’s not done yet, but it will be.”
“It was a good decision to start on the soft tyre” – Lando Norris
It was an equally impressive sprint qualifying for Lando Norris, the British driver who started the sprint in fourth, finished fourth and will start from third place for Sunday’s race.
The British driver did well to keep world champion Lewis Hamilton behind the entire sprint, after the world champion tumbled down the grid early on. Norris is looking forward to Sunday in what could possibly be an incredible day for Mclaren.
“Good sprint quali from us as a team. First of all, I think it was a good decision to start on the Soft tyre – it worked well for both Daniel and myself. We both gain a position tomorrow, and Daniel got a point today too, so that’s great for the team. I think it sets us up even better than we were expecting for the race. So, a positive day. I think the race pace is good as well, and we can look forward to hopefully some more points tomorrow.”