Daniel Ricciardo’s 2021 helmet design features the phrase ‘All Good All Ways’. The much loved Aussie from Perth certainly demonstrated a good character in the way that he let Lando Norris pass him during the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix. Ricciardo spoke to Sky F1 after the race and shared that he had to "swallow his pride" after being ordered to let his British teammate Lando Norris pass him. Such a good action led to a podium for Lando and that will always benefit the team as a whole.
The Emilia Romagna Grand Prix (to use its abbreviated title) was an incident-filled and red-flag-featured memorable race. When all was said and done, Max Verstappen won, Lewis Hamilton was second and Lando Norris crossed the line in third.
Having been on the pace all weekend, Lando Norris was desperately disappointed to start the race in seventh when he knew that third on the starting grid was well within his reach. As it was, a deleted lap time in qualifying ensured seventh would be his starting slot. Nevertheless, the Briton reached the podium with a magnificent drive.
Formula One is a team sport and this was evident when McLaren ordered Lando Norris’ Australian teammate Daniel Ricciardo to let Norris overtake him - team instructions in F1 once again.
Early on in the Grand Prix after the restart, Lando Norris told the McLaren pit wall: “I have a lot more pace in me, I can’t use it at the moment. I need clean air.” Then, not long after, Daniel Ricciardo was told: “We want to swap positions, we need to see Lando’s pace in clean air.” Ricciardo did his duty and let his quicker team-mate through. The call was indeed the right one seeing how in Lando Norris’ first lap in clean air – the Briton was almost three seconds faster than that of his teammate.
Speaking to Sky F1 after the race, Daniel Ricciardo shared his thoughts on the proceedings.
“That’s where I’ve got to swallow my pride,” Ricciardo said. “The team were fair enough, they gave me time to try and show my pace….There were some laps where I had a bit and I could do a decent time but they gave me the time to show what I had and today it wasn’t enough so I’m not going to get into fisticuffs over it.”
Even though Daniel Ricciardo would eventually cross the finish line in sixth position (a one-place improvement on his Bahrain exploits) he was not too downbeat about his McLaren performance to date:
“I don’t think I underestimated it, I was well aware of this (the learning curve at a new team) when I left Red Bull for Renault, but it’s just unfortunately going to take a bit of time,” Ricciardo said with a sense of calm and pragmatism.
“But the season is long, it’s only race two, of course I want to be quicker already but if I look probably by race seven and I look back at race two, I’m probably giggling."
What is clear is that Daniel Ricciardo’s selflessness will have done him no harm. As such, when the Aussie finds his true pace, it may very well be that his high flying teammate returns the favour.
All Good All Ways – that does indeed sum Daniel Ricciardo up.