His team, Red Bull Racing, was scheduled to have a filming day at Silverstone yesterday, with the team allowed to take the Camobull, as the car is nicknamed, on a 100km drive to generate the media the team needs to promote its 2018 campaign car.
A video released by the team shows a smiling Ricciardo travelling to the circuit and then cutting laps behind the wheel of the Halo-equipped RB14, a rooster tail of spray rising behind the car as it tackles the very wet conditions. It ends with the car boxing in the pits.
However, media reports said the team had to cut its pre-season filming day short after Ricciardo crashed out, hitting the circuit’s barriers at low speed. Even so, reports say the car has sustained damage to the front wing and nose, suspension and underbody. The damage has conservatively been estimated at $US200,000 ($A255,000) by some outlets.
Despite the crash, Red Bull told media its plans for Formula 1 pre-season testing, which starts on with the first session at Barcelona from February 26 to March 1, would still go ahead as scheduled.
Ricciardo remained upbeat about his 2018 car’s ability. “It’s hard to tell from a couple of laps, but the initial feeling in the car is good," Ricciardo said.
"I can already feel that the rear feels pretty settled, even in these poor conditions. Those are encouraging early signs. So far I can see fine with the halo.
“I’d only done a couple of installs with it before so it was pretty new today but I really didn’t notice it was there, which is pretty good. Honestly, unless there’s stuff above, I don’t see any issues at all on a flat track.
“It’s been a long day, trying to get everything going and complete the filming – but a lot better to have that here than in Barcelona.”
The season opener, the Australian Grand Prix, is on March 25.