Sebastian Vettel Didn’t Leave Red Bull F1 Because of Me: Daniel Ricciardo

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Red Bull enjoyed their fair share of dominance early on in the last decade. Over the years, they have boasted of a lineup of quality drivers like Sebastian Vettel, Mark Webber, Daniel Ricciardo, and Max Verstappen.

The biggest highlight was obviously Red Bull and star driver Vettel sealing four Drivers’ and Constructors’ titles in a row. A sheer sense of invincibility gripped the workings of the team. But, when the turbo hybrid engines era begun in 2013, Red Bull were overshadowed by Mercedes’ efforts.

Daniel Ricciardo joined the team to give a strong challenge to Vettel. And the German driver slowly realized that Ricciardo was indeed faster than him.

Sebastian Vettel left Red Bull in pursuit of a new challenge

There was speculation at the time that Vettel was set to move, because Red Bull were prioritizing Daniel Ricciardo. But the Australian driver has moved to quash these rumors, stating that he thinks Vettel left the team to pursue a new challenge.

In a recent interview, he said, “I was proud because I did a good job. But to be honest, I was also a little sad that he left. I would have loved to drive another season with him.

Sebastian Vettel Ahead Of The Russian GP
Formula One F1 – Russian Grand Prix – Sochi Autodrom, Sochi, Russia – Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel in the paddock ahead of the Grand Prix REUTERS/Maxim Shemetov

“Even if the second season would have been more difficult. But I think I wasn’t the reason he left Red Bull. He achieved so much with them and he just needed a new challenge at the time.” (translated from Google Translate)

A new challenge did arrive in the form of Scuderia Ferrari; when the racing giants came calling, Vettel jumped ship almost instantly.

Vettel and Ricciardo enjoyed a decent 2014 season together

The 2014 Formula 1 season was the last of the pair, and it came to an end with Red Bull in second place behind Mercedes. Daniel Ricciardo put in better performances, which included 3 race wins and 5 podium finishes, and that earned him a third-placed finish in the Drivers’ standings.

Vettel, on the other hand, was poor by his own standards in his final season with the team. Failing to seal even a single race win, the German ended up with three 3rd place finishes.

Daniel Ricciardo Before The Russian GP
Formula One F1 – Russian Grand Prix – Sochi Autodrom, Sochi, Russia – Renault’s Daniel Ricciardo before the race. Pool via REUTERS/Maxim Shemetov

Seven years later, they will now be embroiled in the fight for third with their respective teams. While Daniel Ricciardo would be joining McLaren, Sebastian Vettel will lace up the gloves for Aston Martin Racing.

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