Find out more about our subscriptions

Ricciardo hoping to put together 'complete' performance to Suzuka

Daniel Ricciardo, HRT, 2011HRT driver Daniel Ricciardo is hoping that the Japanese Grand Prix will be the first weekend when he combines a perfect qualifying and race performance.

The Australian has made a good start to his grand prix career, but believes that he has yet to realise his full potential after being thrown into the Spanish team with no experience of the car at Silverstone in July.

The last two races have also proved difficult for Ricciardo. He was unclassified in the Italian Grand Prix after starting the race late when his car didn't get off the line and then finished 19th in Singapore after hitting Timo Glock's Virgin on the opening lap.

"It's definitely important," he said when asked by AUTOSPORT how vital it is that he has a clean weekend. "I'm still looking for that one weekend for everything, qualifying and the race, to go well.

"I've still got to put it all together. We've managed to do a good race at some points and a good qualifying at some points, so I know that the capability is there to do it. I've just got to make Saturday and Sunday good days.

"I'll try and make that happen here. If I can get the hang of the circuit, it will hopefully be one that suits me. I like the layout."

The 22-year-old has never driven at Suzuka, so the key to him realising his ambitions for the weekend depends on how quickly he gets to grips with a track rated by many drivers as the biggest challenge in F1.

Although Ricciardo drove the circuit on Red Bull's simulator ahead of the 2010 race, his schedule has prevented him trying it again in the build up to this year's grand prix.

"I just finished walking the track and it looks amazing," he said. "Every corner seems to have a little detail to it that seems challenging, so I expect it not to be easy.

"I'll make the most of tomorrow's sessions and try to learn as much as I can and try out new lines. A lot of the corners are cambered and banked, so you have to observe others a lot here to see what the best line is."

Ricciardo will benefit from driving in both sessions during Friday free practice, as it will be team-mate Vitantonio Liuzzi who has to step aside for Narain Karthikeyan for the first 90 minutes of running.

  More news  
Read the AUTOSPORT Digital Edition
Visit the shop
See highlights from 60 years of AUTOSPORT
Breaking news feed
Live commentary feed