Daniel Ricciardo was pleased to play a part in Red Bull’s first double-podium finish of the 2017 Formula 1 season on Sunday in Malaysia, clinching third place after fending off Sebastian Vettel late on.
As Red Bull teammate Max Verstappen swept to the team’s second win of the season, Ricciardo enjoyed a rather lonely race before being hounded by Vettel with 10 laps to go, the Ferrari driver having started last.
Ricciardo was able to keep Vettel at bay with a hard-but-fair defensive move before pulling clear as his rival’s tires began to give way, causing him to drop back quickly.
“I saw Seb was coming, I closed the door a bit later towards the apex. I don’t know how it looked from the outside,” Ricciardo said.
“I don’t know if he was unhappy about it or whatever but it didn’t seem over aggressive from my side, it didn’t feel like I did a real late move or anything.
“From there I expected him to keep coming, keep coming and then I guess maybe kill the tires trying to chase me and then getting close to me.”
After starting the season well off the pace of the front-runners and lucking into a win in Baku, Ricciardo was glad to see Red Bull charge to its best result of the year in Malaysia.
“This double podium is a very positive result for us today,” Ricciardo said. “Obviously Max got the big one and drove well so congrats to him for the win, he drove strong all weekend.
“There were a few extra bits available for the cars here and I think we’re going to try that again in Suzuka. It looks positive for us at the high downforce circuits.”
Defending MotoGP series champion Marc Marquez underwent a second surgery Monday after a titanium plate inserted in his fractured right arm sustained damage. The Repsol Honda Team said in a statement that it’ll be two days before the recovery period is determined.
Marquez was injured during a crash in the July 19 season opener. He underwent an initial surgery July 21 in Barcelona, and doctors said there was no nerve damage.
The eight-time champion was cleared to race in the season’s second event Jerez. But Marquez decided to skip the July 26 race after experiencing discomfort while riding the No. 93 bike in a July 25 practice.
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He had planned to race in Sunday’s grand prix at the Automotodrom Brno in the Czech Republic in hopes of returning to defend his title. His status for Sunday apparently will be unclear until at least Wednesday.
In a statement Monday, the team said the titanium plate in Marquez’s right arm successfully was replaced after stress accumulation. Marquez will stay in the hospital for two days recovering.
Dr Xavier Mir, who performed the surgery at the Hospital Universitari Dexeus, said in the release that “Marc Marquez underwent surgery 13 days ago and today he returned to the operating room. The first operation was successful, what was not expected was that the plate was insufficient. An accumulation of stress in the operated area has caused the plate to suffer some damage, so today the titanium plate has been removed and replaced by a new fixation.
“The rider has not felt pain during this period. He has always followed the medical advice given and the feeling from his body. Unfortunately, an overstress has caused this issue. Now we have to wait 48 hours to understand the recovery time.”