Daniel Ricciardo says the reality of the delayed start to this year’s Formula 1 season is now “setting in”, unsure as to where he’ll be racing next in 2020.
Due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic the first eight races on the calendar have been called off, with Canada currently scheduled to host the season opener on June 14.
The Monaco Grand Prix was one of the races affected most, as officials were forced to cancel the event, which means F1 won’t race in the principality for the first time since 1954.
Ricciardo, who claimed his most recent career win in Monaco back in 2018, said the news the circuit won’t host F1 this year was particularly hard to take.
“I’m not like racing laps in my head yet, because I don’t know what track we’re going to be racing on,” Ricciardo said in a Q&A on Renault’s Instagram.
“I watched an onboard of Monaco last night and got a bit sad. I don’t really know where we’re going to be. That one hurt me.
“They’re all going to hurt, for sure, Melbourne being so close as well. The reality is setting in, unfortunately.”
F1 CEO Chase Carey is continuing to assess the possibility of staging at least 15-18 races later this year, but the fluidity of the situation means nothing is set in stone.
Contemplating about a return to racing later in the year, Ricciardo joked he was “thinking of qualifying last” as he believes Turn 1 could be “mayhem” at the first race.
He added: “I’ll just watch it all unfold, and then I’ll lead the first lap. I’ll put it on pole and voluntarily start last!”
With most countries on lockdown amidst the COVID-19 virus, Ricciardo has been using the time to train back at home in Australia.
“Training’s definitely the thing that’s keeping me with that competitive mindset,” he said. “You get a bit of anger out when you train, so that’s been my medicine for now.
“I feel like now is kind of perfect to get in shape. We’re forced to stay in, there’s no jet lag, there’s no airports, we can really create like a training camp which we don’t always have.
“It’s been nice knowing we’ve got time, we don’t have to rush it. I think you’re going to see a lot of drivers and people in general, whenever this is over, all pretty fit I hope.”