30 WINTER 2014
foRmula 1 2014
other team principals, they know who I
am now, so that’s alright!”
Next year, Mercedes is likely to still rule
the roost, and perhaps the likes of Ferrari
or maybe even McLaren will move up the
order. So is Red Bull’s rising star prepared
for a reality check, should it come?
“I’m riding a pretty big wave at the
moment,” says Ricciardo, “but eventually it
will come down, then go back up. It’s normal.
It’s about controlling your bad days as best
as possible, controlling your emotions, not
getting frustrated. And, yeah, accepting
that you’re not always going to win.
“But it’s easier said than done. It’s easy
to get frustrated – particularly now that I’ve
won a few races. Your expectations build,
and if I’m running around fifth and sixth, I’m
not happy with that. But you’ve sometimes
got to take a step back, and deal with it.
“In one or two years’ time I shouldn’t
be a worse driver, I should be better.
Circumstances around me might change,
but I should never doubt my own ability.”
Daniil Kvyat exploded onto the
Formula 1 scene this year, leaping
ahead of other more experienced
candidates on the Red Bull talent
ladder to land the job of replacing
Daniel Ricciardo at Toro Rosso.
After just one season he’s been
promoted to Red Bull Racing to
replace Ferrari-bound Sebastian
Vettel, and it says a lot that when
RBR was informed by the four-time
F1 World Champion that he wanted
out, the management made an
instant decision on his replacement.
The Russian only earned points five
times in his rookie year, never bettering
ninth, and scored less well than more
experienced teammate Jean-Eric
Vergne. But it was the overall impression
he created, and a belief that he has huge
potential, that got him the RBR gig.
His arrival means Ricciardo’s role
changes from newbie with nothing to
lose, to the guy leading the team while
keeping an eye on the young upstart.
“I shouldn’t let that change anything
I do behind the wheel or with the
engineers,” says Ricciardo. “If I ever
find myself trying to get too much out
of it to put one over on Daniil Kvyat, I’ll
step back and try and take this year’s
approach, because it’s worked. I’m not
going to take Daniil lightly, but I’ve just
got to do what I’m doing.
“Obviously, they’ll rely a bit more
on my feedback now, especially while
Daniil gets up to speed at the start of
the season, but I think I’m the right
person for that situation now.”
Much like Daniel Ricciardo in 2014, Daniil
Kvyat (ABOVE) comes to Red Bull Racing
next season as the new kid with little to lose.
DaNIEl, mEET DaNIIl..
A nEw tEAM DynAMic
“i’m riding a big wave at
the moment, but eventually
it’ll come down, then go
back up. it’s normal”
“It was the same when I started karting
– I was hopeless at overtaking, couldn’t pass
anyone. But once I had confidence in the
kart, I was one of the more aggressive or
decisive drivers. I’m seeing that trend now.”
As 2014 draws to a close, Ricciardo,
along with Valtteri Bottas, are the guys
who the top teams are eyeing as future
prospects. He admits that’s flattering, but
doesn’t see a switch any time soon.
“I think it’s obvious I’ve created some
awareness,” he says. “But the other
teams know I’m on a contract from Red
Bull for at least next year. And longer
term, I plan to be here for a while. We’ll
see what happens down the track. The
Does anybody in
racing grin more
than Dan Ricciardo?
It’s unlikely. But
his mastery of
in 2014 meant the
Aussie had much
to smile about.
wet or dry, Daniel Ricciardo’s
confidence in the Red Bull
RB10 brought out a previously
unseen style of tough but fair
racecraft. three GP wins
confirmed its effectiveness.