F1 Australian GP: Daniel Ricciardo says Red Bull too inconsistent

Daniel Ricciardo said his "inconsistent" Red Bull-Renault Formula 1 car was simply too slow to beat Felipe Nasr's Sauber to fifth in the Australian Grand Prix

F1 Australian GP: Daniel Ricciardo says Red Bull too inconsistent

The home favourite believes his team was at least two seconds off the pace around Melbourne, where 12 months ago he finished second to Nico Rosberg's Mercedes on the road before being disqualified for a fuel-flow irregularity.

Ricciardo had struggled with driveability all weekend, qualifying only seventh, and he could not recover after losing further ground at the start.

"It was not easy to drive around there," he said.

"I was fighting to try to get around the Sauber but we just didn't have the legs.

"It's just inconsistent with what I get behind the wheel.

"Each lap it seems to fluctuate a bit and it's hard to put your finger on it."

Having won three grands prix last year, Ricciardo and Red Bull had expected to close the gap to Mercedes for the start of 2015.

The Australian said having taken a step backwards despite the build-up being much smoother than last season was the "most surprising" thing about Red Bull's problems.

"Winter was a lot better than last year but in terms of pace we're not one second off, it's more 2s, 2.5s off," Ricciardo said.

"We know where a lot of that lies but obviously there's some more as well and that's unexpected.

"We're definitely behind, but it is what it is and we've got to try to make the best of it. I'm sure we will get there but it could be a little while."

The second Red Bull of Daniil Kvyat retired on the way to the grid with what the team believes was a transmission problem.

"I feel for Dany," Ricciardo added.

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