In qualifying for the Malaysian Grand Prix, Daniel Ricciardo found himself out-qualified by his younger teammate for the 11th time this season.

But Ricciardo being the hilarious guy that he is, he used the opportunity of Max Verstappen’s 20th birthday to come up with the best racing driver excuse since Sebastian Vettel got distracted by seagulls, and said the half a tenth he was slower than Verstappen was a birthday gift.

“I would have loved to be on third today, but that half a tenth was actually Max’s birthday gift from me and I wanted to start on fourth really, because that’s where I started last year and I won.

“This is obviously all planned in my mind. I did a bit of a lift of the throttle just before the finish line, so yeah it’s of course all calculated!”

He was of course joking, and later admitted that he’s been beaten by Max on Saturday more often than he would have liked this year.

“Obviously half a tenth from Max, it’s never nice, it’s been half a tenth a few too many times. [But] I got the most out of the car. We can be pretty happy with today. We’re half a second from Lewis around here so I think we can be pretty happy with that. It gives us a chance in the race tomorrow even if it’s dry.

Never change, Daniel. Never change.

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