Max Verstappen had clean swept all of the practice sessions, as the high altitude neutralised a lot of the engine advantage that Mercedes and Ferrari possessed.
But when the crunch situation came, Ricciardo was the one who dug deep and managed to outpace everyone on the grid to secure pole position for the Mexico GP.
Verstappen managed to secure a front row place, with Hamilton and Vettel slotting in behind them.
It was an enthralling qualifying session, wherein it was certain that Red Bull were faster than Mercedes and Ferrari, but they would be ecstatic that they could manage a 1-2 for raceday here in Mexico.
Ricciardo has cut a frustrating figure all this season, as Red Bull and especially Ricciardo have experienced a lot of reliability issues.
But today it was all about Red Bull, and while the practice sessions belonged to Max, when it mattered, Ricciardo stepped up and delivered big time.
Check out the reactions:
— Mercedes-AMG F1 (@MercedesAMGF1) October 27, 2018
— Red Bull Racing (@redbullracing) October 27, 2018
— Luke Smith (@LukeSmithF1) October 27, 2018
— Chain Bear F1 (@chainbearf1) October 27, 2018
— WTF1 (@wtf1official) October 27, 2018
— Easy-drawAPS (@IsidroAPS) October 27, 2018
— Harsh Y Mehta (@harshf1) October 27, 2018
Red Bull front row, but not the polesitter we expected. Ricciardo on pole, Max alongside, but Lewis in position to win the title tomorrow. #MexicoGP
— Sean Sutton (@scsutton1) October 27, 2018
Hamilton would be happy that Vettel is behind on the grid, something that gives him a little breathing space going into the race tomorrow. A 7th place finish should be enough to hand the championship to him and he’ll be trying his best to stay clear of any unwanted hazards tomorrow and certainly hope that the car does not have any reliability issues.
“I know we had the pace as Max showed it all along,” Ricciardo says.
— Bala Yogesh (@Yo_Bala) October 27, 2018
— Erica Payne (@chillaerie) October 27, 2018
DANNY RIC ON POLE! DANNY RIC ON POLE! I’m so stoked. #MexicoGP
— Gina (@perpetualotter) October 27, 2018
— James Wagner (@JamesWagnerTW) October 27, 2018
— Formula 1 (@F1) October 27, 2018
— Matty Latty (@matthew2215) October 27, 2018
— TopGear Brasil™ (@TopGear_BR) October 27, 2018
Ricciardo was an ecstatic man and would hope to finish off his Red Bull career on a high with a win in Mexico tomorrow.