LONDON (Reuters) - Australian Daniel Ricciardo says he is still struggling to move on from the disappointment of losing last weekend’s Spanish Grand Prix, won by his 18-year-old Dutch team make Max Verstappen.
“I think the outcome of the race was frustrating,” the Red Bull driver said in a video interview conducted by the Formula One team ahead of next week’s Monaco Grand Prix, a favorite that he has yet to win.
”Is it easy to move on? I wouldn’t say easy. Can you move on? Absolutely.
“But yeah, it’s been a few days since the race and I still wake up with it on my mind. I am going to bed with it off my mind but I‘m waking up with it on my mind. It will take a bit of time,” he added.
Verstappen was making his debut for the former champions after moving up from Red Bull-owned Toro Rosso in a swap with Russian Daniil Kvyat.
Ricciardo felt his results in the last three races had been less than he deserved, with the Australian leading nearly half of the Spanish Grand Prix before strategy and a late puncture dumped him down to fourth.
He has now had four fourth places in five races, with 11th in Russia.
”I don’t feel we’ve got the most points that we could have,“ said the Australian. ”But definitely in terms of competitiveness we’re better than we thought.
“I think we can fight for a lot more podiums this year.”
Ricciardo said he was happy Red Bull were winning again for the first time since his 2014 Belgian Grand Prix victory but he wanted to be the one on the top step.
”It’s a tough one,“ he said. ”Part of me is happy that everyone is super-motivated and confidence is high... from a personal side, it’s massively frustrating.
“Sure, it’s a team sport but you are doing it for yourself as well and it’s as individual as it is team (effort) and that balance is a tricky one to manage.”
The Australian said Verstappen, the youngest ever race winner, provided a new and big challenge.
“Max is a serious F1 driver and that’s actually really good for me,” he said.
“I think in a way it is good that he is having this success. If I can get on top of that then it is only good for me and probably for both of our careers.”
Reporting by Alan Baldwin, editing by Pritha Sarkar