• Australian Grand Prix

First points are 'huge' - Ricciardo

ESPNF1 Staff
March 19, 2012 « De la Rosa expects HRT improvement in Malaysia | 'We have a master plan' - Vettel »
Daniel Ricciardo finished ninth after a first corner incident © Getty Images
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Toro Rosso driver Daniel Ricciardo described his points finish at his home Australian Grand Prix as a "huge" result after he recovered from a broken front wing on the first lap.

Ricciardo finished ninth after coming back through the field from second last following a first corner collision with Bruno Senna and several other cars. He made up two positions on the final lap to take the first two points of his career and gained one of the positions by pulling an overtaking move on his team-mate Jean-Eric Vergne.

Asked how important it was to beat Vergne, Ricciardo said: "It's good, but I think so much else went on that it was not really my main focus," he said. "Just to get some points was huge. I guess it does make it a bit more satisfying, but it would have been nice for both us to finish in the points and he just missed out in 11th. We've both got good pace, we really do, and I'm not sure what tyres he was on at the same time as me, but if we can continue we should get some better results for the next few [races]."

But he said he was not getting carried away with the strong performance.

"It definitely gives us confidence, but at the same time Albert Park is always a bit unique so we'll keep our feet on the ground. Obviously we'll push like hell and do what we can to get further up the grid, but we'll see on Friday."

Ricciardo thought the damage sustained at the first corner was much worse and was happy with the pace the car showed once it was running again.

"If someone would have said to me on the first corner that we would have finished ninth, I would have put everything we had on it and said 'No way'," he added. "I limped back to the pits and I was convinced we had more damage than a front wing and they changed that and the car was still, let's say, acting a little strange, but the car was good enough to stay out and keep going. My engineer came on the radio giving me the lap times of the leaders and our competitors and I saw were quite competitive. Then the safety car helped us catch up to everyone and then we tried to do what we could and make the most out of the situation."