• Bahrain Grand Prix

One corner short of podium - Ricciardo

ESPN Staff
April 6, 2014 « 'We were not good enough' - Vettel | No excuse for lack of pace - Alonso »
Daniel Ricciardo made a big statement by passing Sebastian Vettel late on © Sutton Images

Daniel Ricciardo admits the finish line came just too early as his chase of third-place Sergio Perez fell agonisingly short in the closing stages of the Bahrain Grand Prix.

Ricciardo was just 0.4s behind Perez and had been closing rapidly on him after dispatching team-mate Sebastian Vettel and Nico Hulkenberg, but had to settle for fourth. Ricciardo's performance was one of the best of the day after starting from 13th, and had been steadily improving even before his late charge, though he was left wondering what might have been.

"Only on that very last lap as we crossed the line did I get the DRS activation," he said. "It was close and we nearly had him. But I have to be very happy with the race. Especially the last stint, once the safety car came out we were really able to race hard with the cars in front. The car came to me as well. The first stint was pretty much like everyone else it seemed, then the second stint was better and the third stint was spot on. I'm really pleased with the progress we made and battling the whole race is good fun.

His most notable overtaking move of the evening was on team-mate Vettel on his charge through the field, and Ricciardo feels he has now established himself as a genuine threat to the world champion.

"It was good fun, I had a couple of cracks [at Vettel]. It took me a few stabs at a few guys today. I think a couple of times I was a bit anxious a little bit with a few guys today. I guess I have [established myself]. It is important. Obviously Seb has been dominant in F1 for the last four years at least and it's nice to come in and show that I can race at the front. Obviously when you have the car underneath you it gives you a lot of confidence to battle and to move forward. In the last stint I was really comfortable with the car and that gave me the confidence to go for the moves and move forward, it was a lot of fun."

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