Daniel Ricciardo is one of the most adored F1 drivers on the grid. Apart from his chill, laid back, and humorous nature off the track, the Australian is also a bloody good driver on it.
Ricciardo rose to fame in 2014, in his debut season with Red Bull. He outperformed his teammate Sebastian Vettel, who had just won 4 consecutive world titles.
The Australian reminisces his relationship with the German and opens up about the challenges, as well as the lessons he learned while facing a 4-time World Champion
In an exclusive interview with F1-Insider, Ricciardo said, “I loved it (the challenge of battling Vettel). He had so much experience. He was the one to beat. (It was) a huge challenge because it was also the team that they had built around him. He was her baby.
“I loved the pressure it put on me. I learned a lot from him and I had a lot of fun when I realized I can challenge him. He wasn’t quite as happy. But I could learn a lot from my career from that time.”
That was the only season Ricciardo raced alongside Vettel. Following the 2014 season, Vettel jumped ship to Ferrari, in pursuit of his 5th championship title. However, in that one season alongside Vettel (167 pts), Ricciardo (238 pts) outscored the German by a massive tally of 71 points!
The current Renault man thus announced to the world that he meant serious business.
Daniel Ricciardo sheds light on Sebastian Vettel’s ‘special’ work ethic
Ricciardo said, “It was special, the way he worked. How he spurred the team on again and again. He had this special German work ethic. To be extremely focused, meticulously illuminating every detail.
“Sometimes I was shocked about how brutally open he bought up a problem. But I quickly learned that this is the only way to get there. I liked the way he did it.”
Ever since they left Red Bull, things haven’t really gone according to plan for either of them. However, with their decision of moving to new teams for 2021 (Ricciardo to McLaren and Vettel to Aston Martin), hope lingers on the horizon.
However, until they make their respective moves, they still have 7 races to go in the current calendar season. Next up is the Eifel Grand Prix on the 11th of October.
Ricciardo has come close to finishing on the podium thrice this season, he’ll be hoping for better luck the 4th time around. As for Vettel, even a spot in the Top-10 would be a welcome change.