The battle in midfield in Formula 1 is unprecedentedly exciting. Renault, Racing Point, McLaren and Ferrari are giving each other no breathing space in the fight for third place.
Renault held third spot after the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix in the wake of Ricciardo capturing a second podium in the space of three events.
But its prospects took a hit at Formula 1’s return to Turkey with Ricciardo taking only a point while Esteban Ocon failed to score after two separate incidents on the opening lap.
Rivals Racing Point, McLaren and outsider Ferrari all scored heavily in the race.
Despite now being “underdogs” for P3 in the Constructors’ Championship, Renault and Daniel Ricciardo aren’t about to give up.
Renault had held the advantage going into the Turkish Grand Prix, but their grasp on P3 in the Constructors’ standings vanished after a disappointing weekend.
The team would score only one point, courtesy of Ricciardo, while double-points finishes for Racing Point, McLaren and Ferrari saw Renault drop to P5 with Ferrari now firmly in the hunt and breathing down Renault’s neck.
It’s now Racing Point in P3 with 154 points, five clear of McLaren. Renault are 13 points further back on 136, while Ferrari now have 130 on the board after finishing P3 and P4 at Istanbul Park.
But while the odds have now swung against Renault, Ricciardo isn’t about to give up with three crucial rounds of the 2020 season remaining.
“For sure now we’re the underdog, but it’s still doable, and there’s still three races,” he is quoted by Autosport.
“If there was only one race left, or even two, I’d certainly be a bit more pessimistic. But we can still do it.
“It’s obviously a shame that there was a big swing [in Turkey]. It does sting, we can’t deny that. But with three races to go I think we still have a chance to pull it off.
“And although the races will probably be dry, they’ll still be a bit going on. We know Bahrain, it’s a tight turn one. So maybe Sergio [Perez] and [Lance] Stroll want to get into each other! We’ll see.”
Ricciardo’s team-mate Esteban Ocon also still sees plenty of opportunities ahead for the French manufacturer in the remaining three races.
“Yeah, very much. I think we still have all opportunities ahead of us,” he replied when asked if Renault remain in the P3 battle.
“There are still three races to go, a lot of points available on the table. Where we are, it can turn very quickly from one way to another. So, you know, I have no doubt that we’ll be again in the fight in Bahrain and in Abu Dhabi as well.
“I think we are usually pretty good in tracks where the heat is strong.
“Usually we look well after the tyres and on these tough tracks we are pretty strong.”
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F1 2020 NEXT RACE
|12:00 - 13:30||Free practice 1|
|16:00 - 17:30||Free practice 2|
|12:00 - 13:00||Free practice 3|
|15:10 - 17:10||Race|