In the new era of Formula 1, from 2014 to the present day, McLaren has experienced one of the most complex periods in its history: far from the front rows, especially during the period in which the single seaters mounted the Honda engine.
The English team began to rise again only in the last three seasons, culminating the process this year with the double win at the Italian GP that swept away nine years of “failures”.
The victory of the Monza Grand Prix was Daniel Ricciardo's highest moment of the season, characterized by ups and downs and dull performance, perhaps as a result of the adapting process to a new car and environment, which forced him to finish the year 45 points behind his teammate, Lando Norris.
"Started not great, got better, but still with some dips," - the Aussie said when asked by Autosport about his year - "Definitely happier with the second half. But there's still some things to work on, so I'm not like overwhelmed with it.
"Let's say I made a step, but clearly I still need to make another one next year to get where I want to be, and probably more on Saturdays just to give me that track position for Sunday and keep me out of a little bit more of a mess. So that's what I'll work on."
Ricciardo did not end the 2021 season in the best way, from the fifth position conquered in Saudi Arabia, things changed again with the Abu Dhabi race, which was disappointing in several respects.
"I think Saudi Arabia was good and look, with the way the safety car and that worked out it, it probably helped me more than it helped others. And in Abu Dhabi it's swung in the other way. So that's how it works, these things go back and forth,” he said.
"I think I got up to ninth, then I think I was sitting there and I feel like I had a bit more pace than [Esteban] Ocon. But it was still tricky to overtake, and ultimately probably I didn't have enough pace to get by, and so that was that.
"And then I think the VSC, Gasly and Fernando [Alonso] were able to jump us so that put us out, and then we're just kind of out of position then so a bit tricky.
"I think we had a bit more pace in clear air, but to be honest that's on me, that's what happens when you qualify 10th and you're in I guess that pack.”
"So definitely something I want to improve next year is those Saturdays, and make Sundays a little easier for myself."
Then he added, joking: "Obviously the magnitude of my 12th is not so big, the magnitude of the world title and how the safety car did that is completely much bigger, so I'm not going to give you my sad story!"