In Brief

F1 digest: Daniel Ricciardo issues warning to Red Bull

Australian driver says rival teams ‘should contact me’ if they are interested

Just a day after Christian Horner urged Daniel Ricciardo to stay at Red Bull, the Australian driver’s future is again the big talking point in Formula 1.

Ricciardo’s contract with Red Bull expires at the end of the current season and after his impressive victory at last weekend’s Chinese Grand Prix, there is talk of a potential move to either Mercedes or Ferrari.

Even with his victory in Shanghai, the 28-year-old says that Red Bull must pick up more wins this season before he decides his next move.

“I want to be with the best car because I think the weekend proved that if I got the opportunity I can pull it off, I can handle that pressure and that intensity,” said Ricciardo in an interview with Channel 10 in Australia. 

“If we can win a few more now with Red Bull, then that looks very attractive. If not, then I guess there’s probably other options. Obviously the win helps but if we were finishing sixth every race this year, then that’s not the most attractive option to me.”

While there is reported interest from both Mercedes and Ferrari, Ricciardo told The Times that he has not been in touch with any other team. 

“I honestly haven’t really thought about it,” he said. “But I kind of feel like if they want me to race for them they should contact me, but they haven’t.”

‘Ricciardo is like a centre forward’

F1’s managing director of motorsport Ross Brawn has compared Daniel Ricciardo’s skills on the track to that of a footballing centre forward with “incredible ball control”.

Speaking after the Red Bull driver’s win in China, Brawn told Motorsport Week: “Once again, Daniel demonstrated an uncanny ability to make the most of any opportunity that comes his way during a Grand Prix. Indeed, all six of his Formula 1 wins have come in races in which he has started fourth or lower. 

“His perfect timing and overtaking skills really are impressive. Daniel is like a centre forward with incredible ball control. When defenders come up against him they simply don’t know what to expect.”

Max needs to ‘think more’ says father Jos

Jos Verstappen, father of Red Bull driver Max, believes his son made an “error of judgment” when he crashed into Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel at the Chinese GP.

Max Verstappen, 20, finished fifth in Shanghai when it looked like he could win the race. Quoted by Sky Sports, his father Jos, a former F1 driver, told Ziggo Sport in Holland: “The overtake on Vettel really wasn’t on. It wasn’t possible. It was an error of judgement.

“In some circumstances Max just has to think more. I don’t want him to change his driving style. He passed two people at the start. He did that perfectly. That’s what we all want to see. But we don’t want to see these kinds of actions. He needs to have it under control. He needs to think.”

May deadline for 2021 engine rules

The management of Formula 1 want the 2021 engine regulations to be agreed with teams by the end of next month, Sky Sports reports. 

It’s reported that FIA president Jean Todt and F1 chairman Chase Carey met with the teams in Paris last night and the discussions were “positive and constructive”.

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