Verstappen’s a tougher team mate than Vettel – Ricciardo

F1 Fanatic Round-up

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In the round-up: Daniel Ricciardo says his current team mate Max Verstappen is a tougher opponent than Sebastian Vettel, who he drove alongside in 2014.

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Comment of the day

@Zimkazimka suggests yesterday’s story about the two fans who claimed to have bribed their way onto the track in Singapore reflects how poor the viewing experience is for spectators at F1 races:

The truth is – F1 is so god damn restricting to its own fans.

I don’t think any of us who travel long distances to a grand prix have any malicious intent (‘ooh, I want to go to a Grand Prix and do something really illegal’). We just want to feel more involved, really be a part of this event, touch our dreams, get something to remember for the rest of our lives.

But I feel we get so little in return to a lot of money and support we show. You get great atmosphere (most times) – that’s true, but that’s about it.

The spectacle is almost certainly better on TV (again, sorry if it’s different for others, but that’s my personal experience – I’ve been following F1 since 1994, but visited only a few live races, this year’s Italian Grand Prix included). Long lines, ridiculous prices at the track, and lots and lots of fences.

Sometimes it feels like at the beginning of the tour in Jurassic Park. You are excited to be there, you know the creatures are there, but you don’t really get to see them, except brief occasional sightings, if you are lucky. And certainly, you don’t get to interact with anything.

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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72 comments on “Verstappen’s a tougher team mate than Vettel – Ricciardo”

  1. Verstappen’s a tougher team mate than Vettel – Ricciardo
    Oh no he didn’t!

    1. Put Richiardo in the other Ferrari and we’ll see how hot headed Seb can really be when he starts losing again.

      1. Put Max in the other Mercedes and see if Vettel can still fight for the world championship

      2. hot headed

        to be fair I wouldn’t equal hot-headedness with (realtive) slowness.

        Actually just because VET’s beating RAI doesn’t mean he’s giving the impression of a really cool-headed guy at all either

      3. Agree Yosi put both Max And Ric in the merc or the ferrari they would both beat consistantly ham and vet hands down.

    2. Oh no he didn’t!

      err…your point is?

      1. He was making out RIC was being sassy :)

          1. DR had one season against SV. That season had SV come off 4 WDC’s in a car that fit him like a glove to then have a car that was the complete opposite for him, including Renault being highly derided by Horner. The shine was well off the 4 WDC apple for RBR. DR entered RBR in the best car on the best team he’d ever had, in a no pressure situation…be bested by SV and it’s no surprise…best SV and it’s gravy.

            But anyway the commentary by DR is more about Max, and for him to say that of the teenager (for about another week) who has barely had the car with which to finish a race, says loads about Max. He’s got a massive future ahead of him and is ultra exciting to watch. Imagine if Max had the same horseshoes as DR this year, on top of his talent.

          2. @robbie, Just like Hamilton came off his high and a WDC in 2008 and then found himself in a dog of a car at the start of 2009. Of course Hamilton just threw in the towel and was completely annihilated by his team mate. Oh wait no, Hamilton actually made the best of what little he had and put in a lot of very impressive performances.

    3. as a team mate, VER has probably been much tougher than VET, I can agree with that.
      VET did has his worst season in 2014, so I don’t think it is a statement about VET, careerwise.

  2. Daniel went against the reigning quadruple world champion on his third season and then went against a hot rookie when he was established in the team, and he is telling me that 2017 is harder than 2014 was?

    Major disappointment with Ricciardo’s marketing snippet.

    1. Salty!

      Max clearly has the pace over DR if not the luck. Vettel was exposed as the mediocre driver he really is in 2014. Vettel’s insistence on a weak number 2 in Raikonnen is purely to flatter his average skills behind the wheel.

      1. Vet is good but not great l think 4 current drivers would beat as a team mate in a un bias team

      2. RB13 you are spot on

    2. @faulty Yes, because Max as a teenager is probably better than Vettel as a 4-time WDC (not a Verstappen fan)

    3. It’s kind of self-evident that Verstappen is more difficult for him to beat than Vettel. He’s a bit quicker than Ricciardo while Vettel was generally slower.

      1. Generally slower in a car the was no longer anything whatsoever like what he had become accustomed to. SV and his side of the garage would have been trying to find a second or two of pace as well as reliability. DR would have been happy to find any tenth or two in the no-pressure situation he was in.

        1. Well, I agree there were reasons for Vettel being slower, but I’m seeing it from Ricciardo’s perspective, i.e. that Verstappen must seem a lot faster. I actually subscribe to the theory Vettel was already eyeing a move to Ferrari and that for whatever reason affected his performance, especially from the second third of the season onward.

          1. Yeah you’re right. He’s not hugely slagging SV moreso than he is complimenting Max. As to SV eyeing Ferrari and that distracting him in his last RBR season…highly possible. On top of Horner’s slagging of Renault SV probably didn’t see them improving much for the next season(s).

          2. I don’t think he was just “eyeing a move to Ferrari”, I still believe he was trying to trigger a performance clause in his contract to allow him to leave. That and the poor reliability he experienced in that year were the only reasons he lost out to Danny Ric.

            As much as I like Ricciardo, what else was he going to say? I’m getting beaten by a worse driver than the one I beat back in 2014?

          3. @asanator I actually left space for that theory :o)
            Actually I think it’s highly plausible too that he wanted to trigger a get-out clause, rumoured at the time. Though maybe only when he realized that Red Bull had indeed fallen off the pace (early in the season).

          4. I cant see Seb wanting a ferrari move effecting his 2014 performance….. Ric simply out raced him, l think Ric is a quicker than Vet and prolly would of beat him in the 2012 /13 RB also…MW has said that Ric is better than he was!!..there is no way Seb will want Ric or Max or Sainz ect as his teammate after is the biggest drama queen in F1.

          5. @nosehair

            he is not the biggest yet, but getting there… if he didnt have very high penalty points that would ban him a race, i think he was on a full rampage mode already… the points only held him hold his horses for a while…

            wait until he loose a race or two due to reliability after this! he is close to spilling some beans already, and i have no doubt if he didnt collided with kimi and only tangled with max, you would be in for a real nasty Vettel!

      2. @david-br an objective and factual response sir.

  3. Sometimes I forget that Danny Ric is 28 years old! Soon he’ll be labelled as past it.

    1. Lewis is 32 year old and he’s in his prime right now. Daniels easily has 5 years to get his world championship

      1. @neviathan
        I definitely disagree on both counts. Imo Hamilton was best in 2007 and 2012. Consistent AND fast. Nowadays he’s still fast but inconsistent.

        And Ricciardo only has a chance if Verstappen keeps running into reliability issues on Sundays. He doesn’t have the speed to outright beat Verstappen.

        1. You mean max understering into ric and moving over into kimi and taking off sebs wing on sundays????

        2. “inconsistent” you mean car wise?

          These cars are super complex and super tempered! You sneeze you loose! In radios, you can hear them talking to engineers, and drivers do not even understand what engineers asking them to do on the controls!

    2. JAY he still as got at least a decade ..hardly past it.

  4. re cotd, it’s a sign of the times that access to good viewing spots is ever more restricted, ostensibly sometimes for safety, and sometimes with good reason, but on balance mostly to squeeze out extra cash. Here in Montreal, as a case study, today you basically either pay for grandstands or don’t bother going. My first gp here was 1984. My dad and I had general admission tickets. We sat on the grass slightly back of the (old) starting grid, maybe 20 meters from the track limits, nary a fence in sight. That would never pass today, but a middle ground ought to be possible.

    Incidentally, when all the engines revved up for the start, it wasn’t a noise, it was literally a physical experience and that was the moment I fell in love with the sport. I get that things move on and technical efficiency makes most things ever more clean, silent and compact, it is what it is, but on a visceral level, today’s F1 can’t compare.

    1. Keith C (other one)
      22nd September 2017, 3:25

      Yes! I’ve been at that spot and heard the noise. Doing a track tour on this last CA GP’s Saturday – to the limited degree that you can – it’s hard to believe that they charge people for these cramped, unsighted spaces. Even more amazing is that people pay for them!

      Keith (Montreal since ’93)

    2. Cotd there my friend

    3. I agree, @maciek current F1 certainly can’t, and does not compare live. Not everyone agrees though. I posted a link here a while back to some Ferrari V12’s and asked ‘does that not stir your soul?’ One guy said, simply, ‘No’. So, either we are VERY different, or there are some people out there without souls!

      I REALLY hope that the engine formula to be introduced next is once again viscerally impressive. I think Ross Brawn understands it needs to be, as do several influential others with respected opinions, but Todt certainly seems not to, and that is alarming.

      1. Clearly F1 is worse off for losing the engine sounds, I don’t think anyone with any degree of live spectating experience would disagree with that. We all know it was such a huge part of the impact of watching a race live. It may not come across so much from a video but as someone who has been to live races before and after, there is no comparison.

        The speed of the hybrid cars is impressive but that’s about it. The halo will further ruin the experience no doubt.
        As with a lot of sports it seems the people organising them are the slowest to catch on to what spectators really want, or at least they don’t prioritise what spectators want.

        I doubt I will attend another live GP in this current era because of it.

  5. ”the Qingming Festival, also known as Tomb-Sweeping Day, when people visit the graves of their ancestors. This is a three-day holiday from April 5-7”

    – If a reason like this is why the Chinese don’t want to keep their provisional date then why were they okay to be close to this particular national holiday this year? And furthermore, an even better alternative would be to put the Chinese GP to April 22, so that it would form back-to-back with the Azerbaijan GP as travelling from Shanghai to Baku would be easier jet lag-wise than travelling from Bahrain to Shanghai. The same applies to Japan and Russia: They should switch dates as well to lessen the impact of the jet lag as east-to-west travelling is easier jet lag-wise than west-to-east travelling., i.e., the Japanese GP to September 30th and the Russian GP to October 7th. These two suggested changes are the ones that should be made to next season’s race calendar at the very least.

    1. @jerejj I m pretty sure the FIA wants to minimise the possibility of rain at those events at that time of year. They really love a dry boring race rather than an interesting wet one

      1. @georgeboole Dry races can be as exciting as wet ones.

        1. Sure they can be but a higher percentage of wet races will be exciting than dry ones.

        2. Well, not really with these cars…

  6. COTD is spot on. I attended to the Spa Grand Prix this year having been offered two gold 1 places (worth 580€ each). I must say it was a deception. I will never do it again and general admissions are more worth it. Here is what i noticed.

    – The drivers simply don’t show themselves. It looks like they do the bare minimum with a few exceptions: local drivers cheering a bit (Vandoorne, Verstappen), Ricciardo doing waves while on podium. Total vague interaction: 20 minutes, podium and driver parade included.

    – Can’t see the pit line, only a long fence with the back of the engineers consoles.

    – Giant screen (I mean, really giant) for the few VIP while all gold stand has to look at a screen so small you can’t even read driver names or timings.

    – At Spa the cars return directly to the pits just after La Source, meaning that when the race’s over, the only drivers you’ll see after that is 10 minutes podium and that’s it. This is most frustrating.

    – I was on third seat row in front of the 4th starting Raikkonen but never felt so far away and disconnected.

    – Being in the best gold stand doesn’t bring anything except an empty wallet and a lot of frustration. Plus, being on a straight line isn’t the most exciting.

    – It remains essentially a TV show and we’re barely tolerated track-side at a high price.

    1. that’s really interesting. i’ve been to spa once and did the whole weekend on general admission. the value was incredible (this was in 2000, it may be dearer now). i was put off the grandstands, not just because of the price – even then it cost hundreds – but because, as @spoutnik says, you’re on a straight. i had stood next to the hangar straight once and seen essentially nothing at all so i didn’t want the same experience again.

      i think circuits depend enormously on the natural features – a hilly circuit like spa gives far more options for viewing the cars and multiple corners. there was one point just after les combes where you could see most of the way down to rivage, all of the following left hander and a long way on towards pouhon. the only downside is that it’s a long track so you don’t see the cars as often. even better are the natural bowls like brands hatch, which is also a short track (esp the indy circuit).

      it seems many modern circuits (or modern iterations of classic circuits) do not take the spectator’s viewing needs in mind. then again, i think some people have absurd expectations. a day walking round the outside of spa, watching qualifying and some support races (these are surely essentially to a decent weekend), eating some chips and mayonnaise, sheltering from the rain under a tree (but not for too long) – that’s a pretty good day in my book. i get the impression that others may not be so easily pleased…

      1. I have to disagree a bit here. One of the things Tilke Circuits had was concern on the spectator viewing experience. Obviously not the main straights- they are the worst place to view any racing event, to be honest, but most corners normally present a vast viewing angle- Malaysia comes to mind, its pretty great as a spectator viewing experience. Also, the whole circuit is accessible through one main area that has all the merchandise, stages, etc, which is great for fans.

        There definitely is much to do in terms of adding Value for a spectator on an F1 race. I’m. a big fan, so just the atmosphere and being part of the event to me mostly suffices, but for the non fan, or the initiated, its really a bit lacklustre. Some Circuits, like Shanghai, or Singapore (in its first year, don’t know how it is now), gives access to the merchandise and main fan area to only grandstand ticket holders, while those on cheaper tickets have different access points – further areas- and have nothing but those stands and a few food stalls, or the occasional merchandise truck, to entertain them during “dead air” moments .

        What more could be done ? I think what needs to be addressed are those “dead air” moments. There needs to be much more F1 related content happening during the days of the event before and after the main show- not only support races- but ways that fans can experience the world of F1 in a family friendly way. And yes, the drivers and teams should be much more available to fans.

    2. @spoutnik My wife and I have the opposite experience to yourself, we attend two GP’s a year and are fortunate to always be in Grandstand seating. I thoroughly enjoy watching F1 on TV, however I vastly prefer attending a full GP weekend, (we are off to Austin in a couple of weeks) it’s much more immersive experience and especially at the European races there is always something on the track, even when I am paying nearly 500€ for a weekend ticket it feels good value vs other large scale, live sporting events.

      We had tickets for Spa in 2015 sat in La Source, and it was fabulous experience (I remember seeing Esteban Ocon interviewed with several other GP3 drivers on a small stage in the fan-zone). Monaco also really comes alive when you attend, it is often a comparatively dull race to watch on TV. Clearly your are watching the race from a different perspective, you can visually follow the gaps between drivers, understand the different lines taken. Watching drivers in wet conditions is much better live than on the TV footage.

      The pit walk is the only opportunity to get closer to the drivers, but that’s one over most other sporting events, provided you don’t mind the melee. The British Grandprix is better than most, with many of the drivers attending events on the main stage in the fan-zone area of the circuit.

      I do look forward to the return of some noise in 2021, it is missing from the experience currently, although again the cars sound better live than on TV.

    3. I went to Spa on general admission and we managed to find a really good spot to watch all the support series but 5 minutes before the F1 qualifying started, a few security guards walked over and told us we had to move and then led in 4 or 5 rich looking people in to stand where we were stood previously. That’s the last time I went to see F1 live and now that we’ve lost the engines as well, there is nothing attractive to me in going to a GP vs watching it on TV.

      1. Wow that is truly sad man, seriously I was saving up to attend the Mexican GP but all of your experiences are turning me off.

        1. @redbullf1 I’ve been to the British Grand Prix on several occasions and it’s been well worth it. Only you can decide how much you enjoy it. Don’t let naysayers put you off. My only advice would be to try to do a little research on where you plan on watching the race. It’s ideal to be able to see several corners and also have a big screen in view

    4. My experiences are largely similar, aside from Monaco and Spa as a kid I have been to the Abu Dhabi GP 3 times from 2013 to 2015 as I lived in Dubai.

      2013 – I was in the section of bridge that goes over the track, part of the Viceroy Hotel. Fleeting glimpses of the cars at best plus it was yet another year of Vettel domination so I switched off halfway and just got drunk. There was not much actual focus on the race. I got in a lift with Sean Kingston at one stage and I saw Busta Rhymes get into a fight. Wherever you were around the circuit throughout the weekend though the sound was deafening and it added an electric atmosphere.

      2014 – Nail biter and Lewis was in the fight so I tried my best to follow the race. Saturday in the grandstands was great, the atmosphere was noticeably blunted by the sound of the cars but not as bad as made out to be. Sunday and I was back in the bridge section with only a big TV to follow the actual race! Lewis won the championship, we bought 3000 shots to celebrate, I got drunk.

      2015 – Championship was already wrapped up, this time we were on a yacht opposite a big screen. It was pretty hard to follow what was going on without commentary, as the championship was already wrapped up after a while we stopped trying to follow it and got drunk.

      As you can see, the common theme of a modern F1 race is the party rather than the action, and that’s not due to indifference! It really is just hard to follow and to appreciate the sporting aspect.

  7. Did anyone see the save Max did in T1 at Singapore that the official F1 Instagram posted yesterday? I swear I’ve never seen reactions like Max’s in my time of watching F1. He’s like Gilles Villeneuve. There was an incredible save of his at China as well, plus Brazil last year and I’m sure many more. He gets his car in angles I didn’t think possible.

      1. Hard to really tell with the slow mo but it doesn’t look all that out of the ordinary compared to other F1 drivers.

    1. Um the thing is throwing the car sideways or allowing it to get that way is not the mark of a great circuit driver is it.
      Fangio, Moss, Brabham Gurney, Prost, Schumacher, Hamilton are just some of the examples of great drivers and they all have one thing in common…..they drove/drive in a calculated and smooth style.
      Yes no doubt you can find photos of them getting out of shape but not many.

      1. Oh come on be sensible. I’m not talking about drifting F1 cars to go faster, I’m talking about lightening reaction saves because he is pushing that much harder.

        1. Great drivers never look like they are trying thats the point. See how Verstappen goes over the next couple of years. I admit he is a skillful driver, he is also young with an untidy style, he may improve.

          1. ”Great drivers never look like they’re trying.” I think that is a blanket statement that upon analysis would be untrue. Never?

            And “he may improve”…I think it is almost impossible for him to not improve, given that we constantly hear of seasoned WDC’s having their best season yet or having just run their best race ever…sometimes even for a 5th place.

            I think Max is already an immense threat, and he’ll only get stronger. He’ll be unstoppable in a solid (not distant) top 3 car that is reliable for him. We’re only seeing the tip of the iceberg.

          2. If you can’t appreciate the good… he would have ended up in the wall like Ricciardo in Australia and Baku… and I do consider Ricciardo a good driver

        2. Plenty of drivers have lightning reactions. But it is better to just stay out of trouble totally. I thought Verstappen’s 2 saves at Brazil last year were praised a little too much. His race will have been far more impressive as well as possibly getting a better result if he didn’t have these near misses. They were both triggered by him driving on the wrong part of the circuit for the conditions. Another driver that I remember having a very near miss that I think had cat like reactions was Maldonado when he passed Verstappen in Austria 2015.

      2. Maybe today, but your mention of Moss and Fangio brings back memories of watching them race against each other — their styles were very different. Fangio was always on opposite lock, accelerating hard, back end hanging waaaay out, while Moss “invented” the four-wheel drift, which somehow seemed much smoother, more elegant. Back then everyone compared their differences in style, and the “fans” would often blame a loss, or justify a win, on just that.
        Such big differences are a thing of the past, like the noise of the engines, no drivers going (purposefully) off-track and certainly not driving up kerbs, and (for me anyway) the smell of Castrol R.

    2. I’ve seen that many times over the years from a lot of drivers, most of the top F1 drivers probably do it par for the course.
      I remember seeing Jean Alesi and Gerhard Berger constantly having to catch the V12 Ferrari back in the day

      1. Before my time but I have seen clips of Alesi power sliding that Ferrari v12. I think the mechanical grip/downforce ratio made it more possible back then though.

        1. Haha, nah that was just the way Alesi drove, he was permanently sawing at the wheel like a madman no matter what the car.

          It is still a running joke with my brother and I when we play the F1 games and he or I are sawing at the wheel or “giving it some Alesi”.

        2. @rdotquestionmark i’m with you. That was a young Alonso-level save and he didn’t turn out too bad did he?

  8. Considering Verstappen is the first to outdrive Ricciardo that makes a lot of sense.

    1. Vergne and Kvyat were close though.

  9. The bottom line, Ricciardo and Verstappen don’t have very many wins between the both of them. Sebastian is a 4 time world champion and he is 2 years younger than Lewis. His chances are getting dimmer this year to win this year, however if anyone could pull it off, it would be Seb and Ferrari. I admit, it is a long shot though.

  10. The stats, especially Quali stats, back up this statement 100%. Yeah, it seems that VER is the more natural talented driver, but I think there’re some other factors too. The age difference, for ex, must have an impact too here regarding the speed (altough I reckon it’s not always the case: see Hulk/30 vs Palmer/27), even if it’s not really big given we’re talking about drivers of max 30 years old. RIC is 2 years younger than VET, while VER is +8 years younger than RIC (so VER is +10 years younger than VET). 2 years between RIC and VET is quite neglectable, but +8 years in VER favour it’s not neglectable anymore. Pretty sure that 25% of the reason why VER got the best of RIC is due to the age difference.

  11. I think Max and Ricciardo are very close if it would come to going for a championship.
    Ricciardo is more calculated: he will always get the best result possible and collect lots of points. Like Alan Prost.
    Max is dynamite: he will always go for the max without calculating, so he gets himself in trouble sometimes. He improvises at the spot. More like Senna.

    Max is still getting better every year (qualifying this year). I don’t know if Daniel can still do that.
    Both would be a challenge for Hamilton or Vettel in the same teams.

    1. I like the Prost/Senna analogy, I think it is spot on in theory, although of course in practice both Daniel and Max are yet to show the accomplishments of the other pair. I hope their car will improve enough for them to show their true potentials.

  12. It makes sense for RIC to say this about the man who has leading him in this year’s team-mate qualifying by a whopping 10-4.

    Subtext: “Max may be beating me but I’m still quicker than Seb”.

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