Daniel Ricciardo had doubts about racing in F1's Belgian Grand Prix

Renault Formula 1 driver Daniel Ricciardo says he had doubts about racing in the Belgian Grand Prix, following the death of Formula 2 racer Anthoine Hubert on Saturday

Daniel Ricciardo had doubts about racing in F1's Belgian Grand Prix

Hubert, who had been part of Renault's junior programme, died in a crash in the F2 support race at Spa.

Ricciardo drove to 11th place in the race after sustaining damage in the opening-lap incident and admitted he was happy to see the back of the Belgian GP.

"I'm glad today is over," he said. "I'm glad the race is over.

"I know, weirdly enough, the best way we can kind of show our respect was to race today, but I don't think any of us actually wanted to be here or wanted to race - at least, I'm speaking for myself, but I'm sure I'm not the only one.

"It was tough, it was certainly tough to be here and try and put on a brave face for everyone. "I know a lot of people in the paddock are hurting after yesterday.

"I think everyone's relieved it's done, and we can move on from here, and hopefully it's the last time this stuff happens."

Asked by Autosport whether he had thought about not racing, Ricciardo said: "Yeah, last night, absolutely.

"You question, 'is it really worth it?', for sure. Because at the end of the day, it's a simple question, but it's a pretty honest one as well.

"Yeah, it's our job and it's our profession and it's our life, but also it's still just racing cars around in circles."

Ricciardo added that seeing Hubert's family at the track on Sunday morning during the pre-race tributes helped his mindset.

"To be honest, seeing some of his family here today, that's what gave me more strength than anything else," he said.

"Taking my hat off to them doesn't do it justice. I don't know what to say.

"I could not imagine being in their position, I felt they were a lot stronger than any of us today."

Leclerc: Initial reset 'quite challenging'

Belgian GP race winner Charles Leclerc dedicated his victory to Hubert, who he raced against in his first year of karting in 2005.

Though he admitted it was not easy to get into the right mindset initially, he and his fellow podium finishers Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas said that they had no concerns once they were on-track.

Leclerc said: "For me, it was the first situation like that, where we lose someone on track and you need to race the day after.

"It's obviously quite challenging to then close the visor and go through the exact same corner at the same speed as the day before.

"But that's what you need to do."

Hamilton said all the drivers had to do was to "compartmentalise it, move forward, get in and do your job".

He said: "From a racer's point of view and an athlete's point of view you switch into a zone, and it's quite easy to switch into that zone."

Hamilton's Mercedes team-mate Bottas added: "When you put the helmet there's not much in your mind and you're really concentrating on the thing you love to do: driving.

"Before and after it's in the back of your mind, but when you go into the zone there's no distractions."

shares
comments
Charles Leclerc: Hard to enjoy first F1 win after Hubert's death

Previous article

Charles Leclerc: Hard to enjoy first F1 win after Hubert's death

Next article

No action taken over Perez/Albon F1 Belgian GP last-lap clash

No action taken over Perez/Albon F1 Belgian GP last-lap clash
Load comments
The squandered potential of a 70s F1 underdog Plus

The squandered potential of a 70s F1 underdog

A podium finisher in its first outing but then never again, the BRM P201 was a classic case of an opportunity squandered by disorganisation and complacency, says STUART CODLING

Formula 1
Sep 18, 2021
The other notable Monza escape that F1 should learn from Plus

The other notable Monza escape that F1 should learn from

OPINION: The headlines were dominated by the Italian Grand Prix crash between Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton, who had the halo to thank for avoiding potentially serious injury. But two days earlier, Formula 1 had a lucky escape with a Monza pitlane incident that could also have had grave consequences

Formula 1
Sep 17, 2021
How Monza only added more questions to F1's sprint race conundrum Plus

How Monza only added more questions to F1's sprint race conundrum

With two sprint races under its belt, Formula 1 must now consider its options for them going forward. While they've helped deliver exciting racing on Sundays, the sprints themselves have been somewhat lacking - creating yet another conundrum for F1 to solve...

Formula 1
Sep 16, 2021
Who should Alfa Romeo sign for 2022's F1 season? Plus

Who should Alfa Romeo sign for 2022's F1 season?

OPINION: With Valtteri Bottas already signed up for 2022, all eyes are on the race for the second seat at Alfa Romeo next year. Antonio Giovinazzi is the current incumbent, but faces a tough competition from appealing short and long-term prospects

Formula 1
Sep 15, 2021
The "forced break" that was key to Ricciardo's Monza excellence Plus

The "forced break" that was key to Ricciardo's Monza excellence

OPINION: Daniel Ricciardo has long been considered one of Formula 1’s elite drivers. But his struggles at McLaren since switching from Renault for 2021 have been painful to watch at times. Yet he’s recovered to banish those memories with a famous Monza win – built on a critically important foundation

Formula 1
Sep 14, 2021
How Verstappen is ruining his F1 title battle with Hamilton Plus

How Verstappen is ruining his F1 title battle with Hamilton

OPINION: The Italian GP clash between Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen followed a running theme in the 2021 Formula 1 title fight. Their close-quarters battles have often resulted in contact - and although Hamilton has shown a willingness to back off, Verstappen must learn to temper his aggression

Formula 1
Sep 14, 2021
Italian Grand Prix Driver Ratings Plus

Italian Grand Prix Driver Ratings

Two drivers produced maximum-score performances as, for the second year in a row, Monza threw up an unpredictable result that left several others ruing what might have been

Formula 1
Sep 13, 2021
Why Ricciardo was set for Monza F1 triumph even without Verstappen/Hamilton crash Plus

Why Ricciardo was set for Monza F1 triumph even without Verstappen/Hamilton crash

The clash between Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton was the major flashpoint the 2021 Italian Grand Prix will be remembered for. Yet by this point, race leader Daniel Ricciardo had already done the hard work that would put him in position to end his and McLaren's lengthy win droughts, on a memorable afternoon in Monza

Formula 1
Sep 13, 2021