Ricciardo expecting chaotic Formula 1 restart

Daniel Ricciardo (PA)
Daniel Ricciardo (PA)

Renault's Daniel Ricciardo believes the first race of the 2020 season will be chaotic as drivers and teams clean off the cobwebs from the enforced break due to the coronavirus.

The 2020 season is currently on hold and there has been no on-track action since pre-season testing back in February.

July has been penciled in for when the campaign will begin, and Ricciardo believes there will be "chaos" due to the lack of track time for the drivers.

Speaking on BBC Radio 5 Live, he said: "(It will be) some form of chaos, hopefully in a controlled manner.

"I am not really referencing cars everywhere. But there is going to be so much rust, a combination of emotion, excitement, eagerness."

The opening round of the season will be held in Austria from July 3-5 if everything goes to plan, and Ricciardo says that everyone will be ready to get going.

"Everyone is going to be ready to go," he confirmed.

"You are going to get some guys who perform on that level of adrenaline and others who might not. So you're going to get some bold overtakes, some miscalculated ones. You're going to see a bit of everything, I'm sure."

Ricciardo feels though that he is in a better situation than some of the less experienced drivers to hit the ground running after this long delay. The fact that he is spending the lockdown on his farm near Perth with only his personal trainer and a close friend also helps.

Asked if his body would need to get used to driving an F1 car again, he said: "If this was my first year or two in F1, if I was still not completely adapted to it, my answer would be yes.

"But winter testing is normally a good reference point. My first few winter testings, day one always felt like a bit of a shock to the system again. And the further my career has gone on, the less of a shock that has been.

"The rookies, the first-year, second-year guys, will feel it a little bit more.

"I'm quite fortunate in this whole situation.

"In general, Australia has been pretty good throughout all this and being able to be home and out on the farm has been nice, having so much space and a little bit of freedom as opposed to kind of being locked in a small apartment or something.

"I'm certainly an active kid. I would have struggled in a few other places. This has been really quite nice to get some time here. I haven't had this since I left Australia in 2007, so it's really rare for me.

"We have the space out here on the farm and (can) set up a real training programme, which you never really get.

"Well, you get it at the start of the year but once you get back to Europe and the travelling starts it is so hard to get any routine and consistency.

"Now, we have been able to build an eight-week block and we are starting to see some real good improvements.

"The icing on the cake on that is we haven't been jumping time zones, or locked in pressurised cabins three days a week up in the air, and the benefit is going to be really nice.

"Because it is so unique it was important to maximise this. And who knows? It might give me a bit more longevity in my career."

- TEAMtalk media

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