Formula 1 News

Vettel admits Ricciardo doing better job

Daniel Ricciardo has looked the quicker Red Bull driver so far in 2014, outqualifying and outracing World Champion Sebastian Vettel
Saturday, April 19, 2014

SHANGHAI, April 19, 2014 (AFP) - Sebastian Vettel admitted he needs to raise his game after Red Bull team-mate Daniel Ricciardo on Saturday again out-qualified the four-time world champion at the Chinese Grand Prix.

Ricciardo was no match for pole-sitter Lewis Hamilton, who was fastest by almost six-tenths of a second, but he put himself ahead of Vettel by qualifying on the front row for the second time this season, with the German third.

Ricciardo was also comfortably quicker than Vettel in all three practice sessions for Sunday's race and he has now been Red Bull's fastest qualifier in three out of four grands prix this season.

Vettel said he had no excuses as both drivers have the same car, and that Ricciardo, in his first season with Red Bull, has simply been performing better than the reigning champion.

"I think Daniel is doing a very good job, he has not just had one good weekend, he had good weekends, and so far he seems to be able to get the maximum out of the car," said Vettel.

"On my side, maybe I'm struggling a little bit more, but at the end of the day we have the same car.

"There's nothing between cars, so if he manages to beat me, then he beats me on the circuit, fair and square."

Vettel, who won nine races in a row to close out his fourth successive championship in 2013, is not used to coming second to anyone, let alone his own team-mate. Neither is he happy about it.

"Of course, that's not to my liking but equally, I know that I have to do a little bit better," he said.

The affable Ricciardo, 24, is hoping to bounce back from this week's failed appeal against his disqualification from second in Australia over a technical infringement.

And he was clearly looking forward to trying to rein in the Mercedes of Hamilton, and keep Vettel behind him.

"Looking forward to tomorrow. If it's dry I think we can race up the front," said Ricciardo.

"I'll be ducking my head down the straight, like in a go-kart but yeah, we'll hopefully hang on and fight for at least a podium I hope."

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F1 Standings

Drivers
Teams
1 Lewis Hamilton 384
2 Nico Rosberg 317
3 Daniel Ricciardo 238
4 Valtteri Bottas 186
5 Sebastian Vettel 167
6 Fernando Alonso 159
1 Mercedes 701
2 Red Bull Racing 405
3 Williams F1 320
4 Ferrari 214
5 McLaren 187
6 Sahara Force India 152

View complete standings table »

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Last F1 Race

Abu Dhabi Grand Prix
Yas Island, Yas Marina Circuit
1
Lewis Hamilton
Mercedes
2
Felipe Massa
Williams F1
3
Valtteri Bottas
Williams F1
Fastest Lap

Daniel Ricciardo
1'44.496s

Pole Position

Nico Rosberg

View all »

 

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