Although the conditions were tricky, Daniel Ricciardo was glad to “shake out some cobwebs” as he took the MCL35M for a spin at Silverstone.
McLaren officially launched their 2021 challenger, the Mercedes-powered MCL35M, on Monday night, before heading to a wet Silverstone the following day to put the car through its paces.
But as well as a first glimpse of the MCL35M on the circuit, McLaren were also getting their first sight of Daniel Ricciardo behind the wheel following his move from Renault.
And although the conditions made Ricciardo hesitant to push, he nonetheless was happy to “shake out some cobwebs” in what was his first on-track action in McLaren papaya.
— McLaren (@McLarenF1) February 16, 2021
“Slowly shaken out some cobwebs, first few laps done,” he reflected in a video on the McLaren app.
“It’s probably the worst conditions because it’s greasy, I’m a little cautious on day one, but its all good.”
Ricciardo took over from his new team-mate Lando Norris who had sampled the MCL35M during the morning session.
The Briton is heading into his third campaign with the Woking outfit, and he had “no complaints” following his initial run.
“First of all it’s just nice to be back in a race car. Back in a Formula 1 car – and a McLaren – but it’s nice to sit in the bit of machinery that everyone’s been working hard to put together so big hats off and big thanks to everyone in the team,” he told Sky F1.
“It was nice. Difficult conditions to get an initial feeling, but still just lovely to be back in a race car, pushing it to the limit, a few little oversteers and understeers here and there, and that’s what I like.
“This is day one of me trying to make my own improvements and starting off the season on the right foot and trying to be as prepared as possible. This is more when I can have a bigger impact and start giving my feedback and we can make this car as quick as possible.
“It’s still early days and things to go through, and many more laps we still need to do, but there’s already comments I have from my own comfort side of things, but also with the driveability and the car itself. Not too many comments yet, no complaints, but it’s still early days.”