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Daniel Ricciardo has opened up on his struggles at McLaren, saying his qualifying disaster in Portugal “broke” him before saving face on Sunday.

The Australian was left humiliated when he was eliminated in Q1 at Portimao, qualifying P16 while his teammate, Lando Norris, took out seventh on the grid.

Ricciardo was somewhat back to himself by Sunday, when he raced boldly to jump five spots in just seven laps, before coming home in ninth for two championship points.

Stream Every Practice, Qualifier & Race of the 2021 FIA Formula One World Championship™ Live & On-Demand on Kayo. New to Kayo? Try 14-Days Free Now >

Norris finished 24 seconds and four spots ahead in fifth, while both were well behind race-winner Lewis Hamilton who blitzed the field for his second win of the year.

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F1 2021, Spanish Grand Prix: Lewis Hamilton clips Daniel Ricciardo at press conference, McLaren

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Lewis Hamilton has innocently given Aussie Daniel Ricciardo a harsh reality check during their shared Spanish Grand Prix press conference.

Ahead of Friday night’s practice sessions, Hamilton only needed eight words to succinctly suggest the McLaren star has a car that is capable of winning Grands Prix right now.

The 31-year-old has had a hot and cold start to his career with McLaren, scoring points in all three races this year.

However, he’s also been forced to accept that right now teammate Lando Norris is by far the premier driver.

Ricciardo said after the Portugal race that he is still getting used to the quirks of his McLaren after jumping ship from Renault at the end of 2020, stating specifically that issues with locking the brakes continues to haunt his driving.

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F1 2021: Daniel Ricciardo pit stop blunder, Portuguese GP results, Andreas Seidl reaction, McLaren

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If Daniel Ricciardo could take anything from the Portuguese Grand Prix it’s that despite several mistakes, he still ended up in the points.

While his teammate Lando Norris is off to an absolute flyer in the World Championship, sitting third ahead of Mercedes’ Valtteri Bottas, Ricciardo’s weekend was littered with mistakes.

Stream Every Practice, Qualifier & Race of the 2021 FIA Formula One World Championship™ Live & On-Demand on Kayo. New to Kayo? Try 14-Days Free Now >

While he said he felt as though he was getting more comfortable during the practice sessions, Ricciardo was shown up in the qualifying session, embarrassingly going out in Q1 and starting the race in 16th.

He called it “your worst nightmare as a driver” particularly one that is widely seen as one of the better drivers on the grid.

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F1 news 2021: Daniel Ricciardo reveals major flaw, Lando Norris battle, McLaren problem, Portugal GP results

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Daniel Ricciardo was happy to bounce back at the Portuguese Grand Prix after a horror run in qualifying but knew there were issues he and McLaren must address.

The Aussie F1 star was knocked out in Q1 as qualifying turned into a disaster, but was able to move up from 16th on the grid to finish ninth in the main event and walk away with some points.

Stream Every Practice, Qualifier & Race of the 2021 FIA Formula One World Championship™ Live & On-Demand on Kayo. New to Kayo? Try 14-Days Free Now >

Post-race Ricciardo spoke in general terms about what was going wrong, having finished behind teammate Lando Norris for the third successive time this season. While the young Brit finished on the podium in Italy and came fourth in Bahrain and Portugal, Ricciardo only managed to cross the line seventh and sixth in the first two races of the year.

Teething problems were to be expected with a new team after leaving Renault at the end of 2020, and Ricciardo spoke on the weekend about the difficulties he was facing in his new car and the need to tweak some things with its set-up.

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