Mark Webber, Daniel Ricciardo, Spa-Francorchamps, 2011

HRT: Ricciardo leads the stragglers before retiring

2011 Belgian GP team reviewPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

Daniel Ricciardo led the Lotuses and Virgins before his car failed.

Daniel Ricciardo Vitantonio Liuzzi
Qualifying position 23 22
Qualifying time comparison (Q1) 2’13.077 (+1.461) 2’11.616
Race position 19
Laps 13/44 43/44
Pit stops 1 2

HRT drivers’ lap times throughout the race (in seconds):

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44
Daniel Ricciardo 131.288 121.705 120.924 120.345 120.393 120.76 119.989 120.273 120.134 119.831 119.86 119.996 144.101
Vitantonio Liuzzi 132.876 121.723 121.137 120.461 121.02 120.259 120.42 122.013 121.283 120.967 124.329 131.671 144.521 139.673 132.58 166.213 119.919 118.61 118.716 118.88 118.961 119.077 119.419 119.872 120.091 119.433 123.359 143.287 118.916 121.47 120.044 119.801 118.968 118.709 121.891 118.9 118.456 119.975 119.681 120.413 118.13 118.061 119.12
Mark Webber, Daniel Ricciardo, Spa-Francorchamps, 2011
Mark Webber, Daniel Ricciardo, Spa-Francorchamps, 2011

Daniel Ricciardo

Short on downforce, the HRT drivers struggled in the middle sector by Colin Kolles’s own admission. This was particularly true of Ricciardo in qualifying.

Ricciardo dodged the mess at the first corner and moved up to 17th, in front of his team and Jarno Trulli. He was just starting to come under pressure from Trulli when the safety car came out.

“I can?t be fully satisfied because it has been a short race for me,” he said, “but at least the time I was out there was really positive.”

Another slow HRT pit stop cost him the place, but it didn’t matter as his car coasted to a halt at Rivage on his out lap.

Daniel Ricciardo 2011 form guide

Vitantonio Liuzzi

Liuzzi ran in front of Jerome d’Ambrosio and Trulli at the start before being passed by both of them, slipping back to last place.

Vitantonio Liuzzi 2011 form guide

2011 Belgian Grand Prix

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17 comments on “HRT: Ricciardo leads the stragglers before retiring”

  1. Ricciardo went low at Turn 1, and drove past all of them!

    really gutted to see his car fail, but it was great to see him beating the other new teams!

    1. yeah, good job of reading the race there and great job of staying ahead that long in a HRT that is quite a bit slower.

    2. Yea it was all looking good until he came to a halt.

  2. Liuzzi ran in front of Jerome d’Ambrosio Trulli at the start […]

    Missing an ‘and’ there between D’ambrosio and Trulli? Glad to hear that Ricciardo was leading the new teams!

    1. Added it, thanks.

  3. But where is his “fantastic” raw pace? Wasn t his gap to Liuzzi almost 1,4 seconds in quali? And Tonio really isn t a Spa specialist… It is very unrealistic that Ricciardo would have finished ahead of both Lotuses and Virgins as Liuzzi dropped to last place later on and finished with quite a big gap to Timo…

    1. Who are you quoting there?

    2. Well he was around 6 seconds and a couple of places in front of Liuzzi and 2 seconds+ in front of the chasing Virgin Before he dropped out. HRT are not a match for the Lotuses though. They were just being held up by the Virgins.

    3. I don’t think you can blame him for his quali- first time at Spa in a horrible car and in changeable conditions- Spa is hard enough, let alone those other factors, for a guy in his fourth race!

      1. Excuses? I am still waiting for an approval of Marko s and media claims that he is “the next best thing”…
        Sorry, but I didn t get that impression after his first four Formula one weekends…

        1. Lower your expectations. He isn’t ‘the next best thing’, he is just a rookie driver at the moment. And he’s a good rookie driver.

          1. My expectations are low from the beginning… :)

        2. Button, former world champion started the race in a competitive car from 13th. Circumstance, Circumstance, Circumstance.

          I think a year in HRT is exactly what he needs. Let him earn his place from the back.

    4. He’s still a rookie (and against one of the best drivers ever…)

      1. Liuzzi one of the best drivers ever? I guess it is a joke… :D

        1. He might be a little biased given that both him and Liuzzi are Italian ;)

  4. Rookie’s in rear-of-field cars against experienced team-mates always struggle. Even Button was dominated by Fisichella in the tragic Benetton of 2001.

    It was never going to be easy for Ricciardo to walk into that team and deliver against Liuzzi who had half a season head-start in the car and Pirelli tires and many more years of experience. Despite that however, Ricciardo has been running comfortably ahead of him in the last two grand prix. The 1.4sec gap between them in quail is not representative of anything, there were too many variables. Even Alonso was 3secs off the pole time in Qual 3, I don’t think anyone actually reads anything into that.

    Ricciardo is doing as good a job as he possibly could in my opinion.

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