Daniel Ricciardo is hoping for more luck at the Australian Grand Prix after an engine problem shattered the 32-year-old’s hopes of claiming his first points finish for 2022.

After a disappointing season-opener at Bahrain, Ricciardo looked much better at Saudi Arabia on Monday morning, rising up the ranks from 14th to ninth.

But then disaster struck with 15 laps left, with Ricciardo’s engine failing as the Australian was forced to retire.

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Speaking post-race, Ricciardo was not letting the heartbreak of Monday’s finish get to him, instead taking the positives out of his run prior to the engine failure.

“I lost drive so it could be a number of things, maybe drive shaft if I was to guess. But I’m no mechanic so don’t take my word for it,” he said.

“Obviously we could have had double points which is pretty awesome from where we were a week ago. It was looking alright. There are positives to take from the weekend for sure. We still have a way to go but certainly some progress, which is nice.”

That progress he spoke of though makes the end result at Saudi Arabia even harder to take.

But while it may have ended in devastating fashion for Ricciardo, you could not wipe the smile off his face post-race when asked about the upcoming Australian GP.

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“I’m excited to go home and compete there,” he said.

“For now, we’ll keep chipping away. We can’t promise amazing results yet but we’ll keep at it and I’m sure better things are on the horizon.

“The characteristics of this circuit seemed to help us and although we weren’t setting the timesheets alight, we had a bit more confidence in the car. Looking at Melbourne and the changes we made, I think it is going to be quite flowing and hopefully that suits us.”

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While wanting to be up there himself competing for podiums, Ricciardo also took joy in watching Max Verstappen and Charles Leclerc duel it out for the top spot on Monday.

Specifically, he said it was good for the sport as a whole that the new regulations were resulting in battles between two cars on more than just one corner.

“I think everything we hoped would come out of these new cars is bearing true and watching the battle for the lead, is really awesome to see that racing,” he said.

“Of course, I want to be there but to know we can fight hard for that this year is really exciting. Hopefully we’re battling for some bigger positions soon.”



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