Having led the Spanish Grand Prix for a combined 30 laps, Daniel Ricciardo’s strategy of returning to the soft tyre after a short stint on the medium possibly cost him the race win.

Ricciardo was fighting Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel for the entire race, and when Vettel pitted on lap 38 for his third pit stop, Red Bull was forced to cover their position.

Normally an immediate response to pit would be the best way to cover an undercut, but since Ricciardo still had life in his medium compound tyres, the Australian stayed out for six more laps before making the switch to softs.

“Obviously in hindsight it was the wrong thing to do,” said Ricciardo.

“Maybe during the race it seemed like it made more sense, but then I tried with Vettel. At least I had a crack, but it didn’t work out. Mixed emotions to be not even anywhere on the podium, it sort of sucks, and then the puncture at the end just (put) salt into the wounds. So, yeah, so it is quite frustrating.”

“I think if everyone did it, it makes sense. Yeah, to do it, and to do it after Seb had already committed, it meant that not only did we have to pass Seb, but we had to pass Kimi and Max as well.

“When you are leading the race, to then say alright let’s still try and win but pass three cars, when you don’t have the quickest car down the straight, and it is not the easiest place to overtake. I am not really sure why that was the case today.”

Image via Red Bull Content Pool

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Josh Kruse

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