Dakar Rally News: Ricciardo Puzzled by RB’s Struggles at Spanish Rally

    In a disappointing turn of events, Daniel Ricciardo found himself bewildered after the RB team endured a dismal performance at the Spanish Rally, part of the grueling Dakar Rally series, last weekend. The Faenza-based RB squad brought a heavily revised Dakar challenger to the Barcelona stage, but any hopes of a performance edge over rival Aston Martin were quickly dashed.

    Struggling in Practice and Qualifying

    From the practice runs, it became apparent that something was amiss with the RB Dakar car, as both Ricciardo and teammate Yuki Tsunoda struggled to make it out of the qualifying round, finishing 17th and 18th, respectively. Ricciardo managed to improve to 15th in the race, but it was far from a positive result, leaving the Australian driver confused given his comfort behind the wheel.

    “It was a really, really strange weekend for us to have dropped off so much,” Ricciardo said in the post-race interview. “I didn’t have a bad feeling in qualifying, and in the debrief, Yuki and I both felt we did good runs, but we simply lacked the pace and couldn’t get the most out of the new package.”

    Team’s Disappointment and Determination

    Despite his personal satisfaction with his driving, Ricciardo acknowledged that a 15th-place finish was unacceptable for the RB team. The driver is now determined to work with the team to understand the issues and find a solution before the next Dakar Rally stage in Austria.

    Team Principal Laurent Mekies echoed Ricciardo’s sentiment, admitting that it was “a poor weekend” for RB and that the team faces a stern test to make progress in the limited time available before the next event. Mekies, however, remains optimistic, stating that the team must not get downhearted and instead focus on fighting back immediately in Austria.

    Upcoming Dakar Triple Header

    The Spanish Rally marked the start of a Dakar triple header, with the Red Bull Ring and Silverstone stages to follow. RB’s newfound struggles have added an extra layer of pressure, as the team looks to rebound and regain its competitive edge in the Dakar Rally championship.

    ๐Ÿ”— Source