Ricciardo: First lap melee affected tyre strategy in Sochi

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Daniel Ricciardo says Red Bull’s strategy at the Russian Grand Prix “went wrong” after the team bolted medium Pirelli tyres on his and Daniil Kvyat’s RB12s following the mayhem at the start of the race.

The two team-mates were forced to pit on the opening lap, having damaged their cars when Kvyat hit Sebastian Vettel at the back, which resulted in the Ferrari also clipping the hapless Ricciardo.

Red Bull decided to put both cars on the medium compound, hoping they can make it to the end on their sole set of white-marked tyres. Kvyat managed to do so, albeit a lowly 15th, and Ricciardo fell out of the points-scoring positions when he had to make an extra stop shortly after the halfway mark.

While Red Bull’s call seemed surprising, the Australian explains that the team had to try and make something happen after finding itself on the back foot right away.

"In the end we were forced to try something due to the incident in the first corner," Ricciardo is quoted as saying by Motorsport.com.

"I think that's where the strategy went wrong. We were caught up in an incident, a lot of us were, the race was over for a few of us straight away.

"From then we had a lot of damage, so we tried to put the medium on just to do something, but the car was sliding a lot, and that tyre wasn't really helping it.

"In the end I think it was just more that the race was over from the first lap. It's a shame. We just have to try and look forward to the next one and hopefully some people don't make these mistakes again."

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