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Daniel Ricciardo, McLaren, 1st position, performs a shoey on the podium
Autosport Plus
Formula 1 Italian GP
Special feature

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

He stood alone in the gathering darkness. All his peers had long since departed, off to debrief and then enjoy an early night ahead of Formula 1’s second sprint race experience, or perhaps sample what delights of Monza and Milan they could within the current COVID restrictions.

But Daniel Ricciardo was still chatting away – his face mask masking that famous smile. From afar, it wasn’t possible to detect that he was outlining the “internal rage” he was feeling at qualifying just 0.029s adrift of Red Bull’s Max Verstappen third place and being 0.006s behind team-mate Lando Norris.

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