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2014 F1 title? Could it be Ricciardo's?

2014-06-12 13:35

2014 GP TITLE NOT IMPOSSIBLE: F1 driver Daniel Ricciardo celebrating his win at the 2014 Canadian GP. Image: AFP / Tom Gandolfini

SPIELBERG, Austria - Formula 1 driver Daniel Ricciardo drove past Mercedes' technical trouble at the Canadian GP on (June 8 2014) for his first GP victory with Red Bull.

Former F1 driver Mark Webber, who is preparing for the 2014 Le Mans 24 Hou, said: "He hasn't put a wheel wrong all year so far. There've been testing regulations, wet qualifying, all sorts of stuff thrown at him. But his first win is a big step."

Ricciardo, 24, is riding a wave of form that even team mate Sebastian Vettel is struggling to meet but he might not stop at beating Vettel. 

'WASN'T VETTEL'S FAULT...'

Since the Bahrain GP in April 2014 Ricciardo has notched up three podiums and never finished lower than fourth. He was on the podium after the 2014 Australian GP but later disqualified amid the fuel-flow saga. He had more technical trouble in Malaysian.

Red Bull's adviser Helmut Marko said: "Imagine if Daniel had not had two zero-points results. He'd be even closer to (Lewis) Hamilton." Indeed, even amid Mercedes' domination so far in 2014, Ricciardo - the highest-placed non-Mercedes - is 39 points behind Hamilton after seven races.

Former F1 driver Mika Hakkinen said: "I've noticed Ricciardo has been able to exploit his maximum potential almost constantly whether it's qualifying, racing or overtaking. We can't forget that his team mate is the four-times Formula 1 champion but it's been Ricciardo passing the chequered flag in front."

Marko said a failed GPS system on the pits wall and a further "miscalculation" by Red Bull about Vettel's race strategy thwarted his progress.

"It was not Vettel's fault that Ricciardo did not stay behind him," Marko added.

Stay with Wheels24 for the 2014 F1 season – fresh reports every day.
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