Ricciardo: 2014 rule changes level up playing field
The radical rule changes introduced for the 2014 Formula One season has presented the best chance yet to topple Sebastian Vettel, according to Daniel Ricciardo.
The Western Australian, who will replace Mark Webber at Red Bull, alongside four times champion Vettel next season is already setting his sights on beating his new team-mate.
With new V6 turbo charged engines coming in for next season, forcing teams to make a raft of design changes to the their 2014-spec cars, the 24-year-old believes he has a real chance to match his illustrious German team-mate.
“He has been so dominant with the car over the last few years. If there were no changes, then he would probably continue to be dominant,” Ricciardo told Autosport.com.
“At least with this change now it could make the playing field a bit more even. Hopefully he’s not as dominant with this new package as he has been.
“It definitely brings some things more into my favour.”
Although Ricciardo has two seasons with Toro Rosso and several test sessions with Red Bull under his belt, he admitted he has a lot to learn to be able to fight Vettel week in and week out.
“On that front, I guess I have still got some things to catch up on but let’s just hope I can do that quickly.”
“Having the team around me will fast-track that as well given their level of experience.
“Hopefully they can bring me up quickly and then I will do everything I can to get up to his level in terms of the technical stuff.
“But naturally it will take a little bit of time.”
Ricciardo will have the bonus of a home crowd for his first race at Red Bull when the 2014 Formula One season kicks off in Melbourne for the Australian Grand Prix on March 13-16.