Ricciardo: I want to do well at home

Daniel Ricciardo will be making every effort to impress his home fans for qualifying this afternoon.The Perth-born Ricciardo is all too aware the focus will be on him this weekend, and wants to give the Australian crowd something to cheer about.“That’s on my mind at the moment,” he said after free practice two. “I really want to do well in front of the home crowd.”He admitted, however, that Friday practice for Toro Rosso didn’t go as well as he’d hoped.“Compared to the front guys, we’re three seconds off. It’s a pretty big margin.“We thought we would’ve closed the gap at this stage.“Generally, I want to be quicker. I have faith we can do it, but we’ve got some work to do.”Toro Rosso came away from pre-season testing feeling confident it wouldn’t be left behind by the midfield as it was at the end of 2012, but three hours of practice in Melbourne has left it doubting its own progress.“If I was to take the times out of the equation, I’d say today wasn’t too bad – but the fact is the quick guys are just really quick.“[But] I definitely feel the car’s more drivable than it was in Spain. It’s one of those things. Sometimes you’re quick and you don’t really understand why. And other times you think you’re quick and you’re not.“We’ll figure it out. We can only go forwards, I think.”Even with the car’s unexpected lack of pace, Ricciardo sees an opportunity for Toro Rosso to leap up the grid now that qualifying looks likely to be rain affected.“I think if it rains we’ll close the gap.“We also seem to go pretty well in the wet. It seemed to go very much like last year’s car – it had a pretty good front end and its usual traits in the wet.“Who knows, maybe start on pole!”Qualifying for tomorrow’s race starts at 5PM AEDT.


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