Red Bull drivers Daniel Ricciardo and Daniil Kvyat made no secret of their disappointment after failing to score any points in Sunday’s Japanese Grand Prix.
After suffering a high-speed crash during qualifying on Saturday, Kvyat was forced to start the race from the pit lane, leaving him with a tough task to finish in the points.
Ricciardo looked set to lead the team’s charge, but a first lap clash with Felipe Massa left the Australian with a puncture, forcing him to crawl back to the pits and drop down the order.
“At the start, the best line for me was straight down the middle,” Ricciardo explained. “I saw the gap between Kimi and Felipe and I knew it was close, but I thought they would make a bit of room.
“I haven’t seen the footage and don’t want to put the blame on anyone so we’ll call it a racing incident for now. It’s a shame for the team, I think we could have gained some positions off the line and then the race would have been completely different.
“But we had the puncture, and that damaged the floor so we lost some downforce. I tried to do what I could, we started to catch some cars towards the end but by then I didn’t have the grip to do anything. On a positive note, even with the damaged floor, the car was handling well.”
Kvyat’s continued to struggle throughout the race due to a variety of problems that stopped him from attacking the cars ahead and fighting up the order.
“It was pretty boring for me out there this afternoon, because a combination of circumstances meant I had to just sit back and was unable to attack,” Kvyat said. “I had a completely new car, so that wasn’t so easy. We had difficulties with the tires, the brakes and the overtake button, which made life complicated.
“In the end, I did manage to overtake some people, but it wasn’t great. It’s frustrating and annoying, but there was nothing I could do. Battling for P13 does not give you much satisfaction. But a big thank you to the team, they had a lot of work to do on Saturday night to get the car ready for the race.”
In spite of the difficult result, it did make clear just how impressive Red Bull has been over the past seven years.