Ricciardo aggravated by first Q1 exit
28 July 2012 – Toro Rosso team-mate Jean-Éric Vergne may have already been eliminated from six Q1 qualifying sessions in 2012, but Hungary marked the first such departure for Daniel Ricciardo. The Australian was bumped out of contention in the last knockings of the first qualifying stage, when Sauber’s Kamui Kobayashi posted a better time on his final lap.
“It’s frustrating and a bit disappointing not to have made the cut to Q2, as this is the first time I’ve been stuck in Q1 all season and it would have been nice to keep that sheet clean,” said the Perth-born driver. “The time I set on my first run on the Prime tyre was not too bad, but I was not completely happy with the car so we made a few changes before the Option run.
“It immediately felt pretty good but as I came down the main straight, I had a Lotus come out the pits in front of me and it stayed there for most of my lap. From the outside, maybe it doesn’t look like traffic, but to have someone a couple of seconds in front for a whole lap, can really affect you, especially in qualifying, when you need all the help you can get. It didn’t help my cause.”
With Ricciardo starting 18th, Vergne will be 16th as the pair of Toro Rosso cars sandwich the Mercedes of seven-time World Champion Michael Schumacher. Since qualifying, Toro Rosso has notified GPUpdate.net that it was second placed Romain Grosjean who allegedly held up Ricciardo in Q1.