Daniel Ricciardo believes Red Bull will become more competitive after the opening five flyaway races of the new season.
Speaking at the launch of the team’s new livery yesterday, Ricciardo said he is expecting to see gains from the team’s TAG Heuer-branded Renault engine when the European phase of the championship begins.
“The last six months of 2015 was really good,” said Ricciardo. “The car came a long way and we made the step we needed to. Especially heading into this year I think it’s given us the right platform to now start the season.”
“I think the first four race we’ll see where we are but I think probably once we get into Europe, not only from the car but I think from the engine we should be able to start to make some gains.”
“If we don’t start off in the top five, top six in the first few races I think coming into Europe we’ll definitely have a better change to get there. If we haven’t got a podium up until that stage then hopefully then it starts being more realistic for us.”
Ricciardo also gave his backing to F1’s new tyre rules for 2016, which he expects will create more strategic interest.
“With the tyre stuff they’re doing this year, we’ve got the choice to choose an extra tyre for the weekend, I hope it can vary a few things,” he said.
“I don’t think everyone’s necessarily going to always choose the softer compound so it could be interesting. A bit more strategy involved, a bit more thought coming into the races, planning ahead. Just another thing that could spice up the sport which should be good.”
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6 comments on “Red Bull will make gains after flyaway races – Ricciardo”
18th February 2016, 18:29
I hope he’s right, I’m not exactly fond of Red Bull but it’s good for the health of the sport when we have as many teams as possible competing for race wins/podiums. I’ve never advocated a spec series, because I think that one of the key aspects of F1 is giving the designers a set of regulations and seeing what they can do with it, however there’s no doubt that the quality of the racing is higher amongst evenly matched teams.
I have high hopes for 2016. A resurgent Ferrari and a newly motivated Renault, plus gains for McLaren Honda and hopefully the Mercedes-powered Manor, would do a lot to bunch up the field and deliver a more interesting season than we’ve been given over the past few years.
18th February 2016, 18:45
for the sake of the sport and competition I really hope Red Bull are a threat again, if you get Ferrari into striking distance and Red Bull back to the top 3 then we’ll see some scraps between williams, ferrari and red bull, hopefully force india as well.
So promising year it seems, year three of stable rules so the stragglers should keep catching up and make this more competitive. My only worry is that this year we’ll see more close completion since we’re in the third year of stable rules, only to have everything turned upside down again for 2017 and a new dominating car. just great! (insert sarcasm)
18th February 2016, 20:27
Yep my thought too. It was mostly for Red Bull though and now it doesn’t include the engine shakeup they wanted and their chassis is looking good, I’m hoping the impetus has gone out of it. Tweak the front wing for following and leave the rest alone.
18th February 2016, 23:13
Very interesting statement.
19th February 2016, 12:43
Well good. But all teams that struggle hope to make gains at this stage. There’s no particular reason presented for Red Bull, specifically, to make larger power gains than other teams, so I’m sceptical. How are Renault going to magically make, say, 100 horsepower appear in March or April? Why at that point in the season? Why not over the winter or last year?
I just don’t get it. I hope they are more competitive. Seeing cars with different strengths competing at the front of the pack, maybe with different tires strategies or different aero packages, can make for great racing. But why just Renault and why at that time?
Anybody have any other theories?
19th February 2016, 17:26
”the opening five flyaway races of the new season.” – Spanish GP isn’t a flyaway race and the Russian GP venue in Sochi isn’t that far away either.
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