Ricciardo's ice cold reply to upstart teammate

4 weeks ago 17
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Australia's Daniel Ricciardo said he wanted to send a message to the rest of the field, including his teammate Lando Norris, on the final lap of the Italian Grand Prix.

The McLaren pair finished 1-2, the first time the team has achieved the feat since 2010, with Ricciardo's win his first podium of the year after a disappointing first half of the season.

While Norris had finished in the top five in nine of the first 10 races, the Australian managed just one top five in the same period.

Daniel Ricciardo and Lando Norris finished 1-2 for McLaren at the Italian Grand Prix. (Getty)

That was reversed at Monza, with Ricciardo starting from second place on the grid, taking the lead at the opening corner, and controlling the race.

While Norris was less than two seconds behind at the finish, the 21-year-old had been on the radio to McLaren during the race, complaining that Ricciardo was driving "too slow."

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Ricciardo says he had extra speed in hand, setting the fastest lap of the race on the final tour to put Norris in his place.

"It was to remind people that I haven't forgotten (how to do it)," Ricciardo told the BBC.

"I was in control and I just wanted to show it was the last lap and I am not feeling any of the nerves or pressure so I am going to do my fastest lap of the race on the last lap, just to remind people, 'I got this'."

Daniel Ricciardo celebrating his Italian Grand Prix victory. (Getty)

While Norris was tucked under Ricciardo's rear wing after the safety car caused by the crash between Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton, the Australian said it was simply a case of preserving the tyres more than was necessary.

"There was one lap in particular, not long after the restart when I let him get too close and I probably gave him the impression I was maybe not that fast. And I think that's when he probably said 'I want to try and attack Daniel'.

"I could see in my mirrors, he was probably even closer than I let Max get at the start of the race.

Mclaren driver Daniel Ricciardo of Australia celebrates after winning the Italian Formula One Grand Prix, at Monza racetrack, in Monza, Italy, Sunday, Sept.12, 2021. (AP Photo/Antonio Calanni) (AP)

"I was like, 'OK, I don't need to be saving (tyres) this much, so then I kind of turned it up a little bit. With the restarts and the craziness of the racing these days, I was always trying to save a little bit, just in case there was another restart.

"Could I have won by 20 seconds? I'm not saying I could have, no, but I was just doing what I had to."

Despite the win at Monza, Ricciardo is still down in eighth place in the world championship with 83 points, while Norris is fourth with 132.

But the 1-2 finish did provide a big boost for McLaren, who moved ahead of Ferrari into third spot in the constructors' championship.

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