In Brief

F1 digest: ‘very big chance’ Daniel Ricciardo could stay at Red Bull

Red Bull driver Max Verstappen says Ricciardo is the ‘perfect’ teammate

Verstappen: why wouldn’t Ricciardo stay at Red Bull?

Max Verstappen believes there’s a “big chance” that teammate Daniel Ricciardo will remain with Red Bull Racing.

Ricciardo’s contract expires at the end of the season and he has been linked with a big-money move to McLaren. Even though Ricciardo has yet to decide where his Formula 1 future lies, Verstappen is keen for the Australian to stay at Red Bull.

Speaking ahead of this weekend’s F1 Austrian Grand Prix at the Red Bull Ring, Verstappen told F1.com: “The chances are very big for him to stay. He is already here so why wouldn’t he stay? He is a great teammate to have. We have a lot of fun together, but also once we are in the car we are pushing each other to a higher level. 

“I enjoy working with him. He is one of the best teammates to have in the paddock in terms of relationship, but also one of the toughest ones. But I like competition so it is perfect to have him as a teammate.”

Meanwhile, the BBC reports that Ricciardo has joked that his ideal teammate would be Kimi Raikkonen or Valtteri Bottas. Ricciardo was asked a question by a Finnish journalist.

Hamilton excited by upgrades

Lewis Hamilton says this weekend’s Austrian Grand Prix will be a close battle but he is excited to drive his upgraded Mercedes at the Red Bull Ring.

World champion Hamilton won last week in France to open up a 14-point lead over Sebastian Vettel at the top of the F1 drivers’ standings - and he believes the car upgrades will help Mercedes in the title battle.

He told Sky Sports: “Up until now we’ve not really had a lot of development parts on the car. I’ve been aware that the guys have been working increasingly harder to try and make sure we bring quality rather than quantity. 

“It’s great to see there are some new bits here this weekend and I’m excited to try them on track. It will undoubtedly help us in our battle to fight the other guys.”

Leclerc: Ferrari drive is my dream

Sauber star Charles Leclerc has revealed it’s his “dream” to one day drive for Ferrari. He told Sky Sports: “It’s a dream for any driver to be in this red seat and it’s a dream for me too.” It’s rumoured that the 20-year-old is in line to replace Kimi Raikkonen at Ferrari in 2019. 

Williams gets first pick in F1 esports draft

The 2018 F1 Esports Pro Draft will see the Williams team get first pick when it takes place on 9 July. Williams Esports are one of nine F1 teams who will compete in the esports league this year.  

The order for the 2018 F1 Esports Pro Draft first-round picks are:

  • 1 Williams Esports 
  • 2 Hype Energy Eforce India 
  • 3 Haas F1 
  • 4 Mercedes AMG Petronas Motorsport 
  • 5 Renault Sport Team Vitality 
  • 6 Sauber 
  • 7 Toro Rosso 
  • 8 McLaren 
  • 9 Red Bull Racing Esports

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