Ricciardo takes first podium, Vettel happy with comeback

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F1 Grand Prix, GP Spain, Circuit de Catalunyaes

Daniel Ricciardo took his first real podium finish in Formula One after getting disqualified at the Australian Grand Prix earlier this season. The Australian drove a solitary race to second place while his team mate at Red Bull, Sebastian Vettel recovered from 15th to finish 4th.

Daniel Ricciardo, 3rd: “Holy Doly! The race was not overly exciting, although I don't know how it was behind, maybe there were a lot of fights going on and for viewers there was a bit more to watch, but for us it was a good result. We knew we could not catch the Mercedes, but we believed we had better pace than the guys behind, so before the race we’d said that third was going to be a good day. It's nice to stand back up on the podium – I actually still feel a bit awkward up there, but I'm sure I will get more comfortable. It seems at the moment it’s Mercedes who are battling between themselves and they are doing a tremendous job. With Seb coming through the pack for fourth today, it seems we have been the second best team this weekend. I think it is still going to vary a bit, but maybe it will be a battle for that last place on the podium with me and Seb in Monaco, we will see. Monaco should be okay for us and hopefully we can get a bit closer to the Mercs there. It will be interesting and we will try as much as we can to catch them!”

Sebastian Vettel, 4th: “All in all I think that was the best that we could do today; the start was not so great and I lost a place, but then I was able to get it back towards the end of the lap; it’s always tricky when you are further back. It was a very busy first lap. I was then sort of stuck in the train, so I couldn't really feel how far we could go today and how quick we were, but once we came in I was on the harder tyre and was able to stick with the people in front and even catch them a little bit. I think we realised that the pace was there and after that we had two fresh sets of tyres from yesterday, so we could go even further up the road! I enjoyed it a lot and I think fourth was the best we could do today. Daniel drove a good race today and I think, from a team point of view, third and fourth is what we could get today. Mercedes is very strong – they have a phenomenal engine, two very good drivers, a very good car, and a very good team, they're doing a good job so it would be wrong to complain and moan about how dominant they are - they worked better than everyone else in the winter and deserve to be in that position. Hopefully, from our point of view, rather sooner than later we'll give them a hard time – that’s our motivation. I hope that in time we can catch up, and as I said start giving them a run for their money.”

Christian Horner, Team Principal: “A great team performance today. Daniel is thoroughly deserving of his first official podium having been faultless all weekend. Sebastian, after a nightmare start to the weekend losing all of Friday, a gearbox failure on Saturday and a further five place grid penalty, produced a fantastic comeback drive to come back through the field. With the help of a strong strategy and great team work, including the fastest team pit stop of the day, Sebastian moved back up to fourth place and got the fastest lap, so all things considered, it was a positive race.”

Thierry Salvi, Renault: “Daniel confirmed he was the quickest car behind Mercedes this weekend. He managed his race perfectly, just the same as he did during qualifying. Giving the team a podium is a good gift this weekend. For Seb, it was a great recovery drive and he was flat out throughout the race. His strategy allowed him to ramp up to fourth place: a fantastic result looking at his weekend as a whole – he didn’t run on Friday, so was not able to test and set up his car, then FP3 was very busy and again an issue in qualifying. Today’s result was the best possible for him in these situations so he showed again how strong he can be in these tricky situations.”