Ricciardo wants sign Red Bull can fight for title by 2019

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In the round-up: Daniel Ricciardo says he needs to see Red Bull is in a position to compete for the championship in 2019 if he is to remain at the team.

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That crash one week ago continues to raise debate:

It was a racing incident, however for Vettel it was one hundred percent avoidable. His target was to finish ahead of Hamilton to re-take the lead of the championship. Except he took a characteristic defensive lunge across the track (nothing wrong with that). Bottom line: if Vettel had shown some caution he would have been rewarded him there.

Hamilton knows in the same situation he would more than likely have come out the corner in one piece, albeit having relinquished the lead. Yes, a racing incident, but it was a rash move from Vettel considering the stakes.

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95 comments on “Ricciardo wants sign Red Bull can fight for title by 2019”

  1. Sundar Srinivas Harish
    24th September 2017, 0:53

    Next Sunday, the five red lights will go out for the last time at the Sepang International Circuit (SIC).

    Dramatic, but inaccurate considering the Malaysian Moto GP will continue. In hindsight, the organizers might’ve pulled out of hosting F1 prematurely, considering the management change and the positive sentiment that Liberty has brought back to the sport. They should’ve at least negotiated a 5-year deal or something!

    1. I don’t think it matters.

      F1 never really took off in Malaysia. In the early days there was a huge Ferrari -Schumacher following, but after that, there has been very little interest. In fact you wouldn’t even know there was a race on if you walked around KL.

      To put it simply, F1 was too expensive for the average Malaysian. MotoGP sells out every year because it’s affordable, people take their families out to the track for a weekend out. We also have to note that there is a big big motorcycle culture in Malaysia, so it goes hand in hand.

      Sad to see Sepang go.

      1. F1 did took off for a while in Malaysia.. back in the days of Sauber-Petronas partnership. They had quite a lot of things going on at that time with the Engineering scholarships, the demo runs and those pit lane park. Also it used to be a lot of fun with drivers doing their meet greet sessions around KL city centre not just Petronas sponsored team. I remember the old days of running around Kl streets getting from one mall to another on Wednesday seeing one driver after another. All these events unfortunately stop happening around 2008-2009 and since then the hype was more of shopping sales? add that to Formula 1 moving to subscription tv and since then it just died down. If you ask most malaysian people, they actually would remember more f1 drivers like Massa, Raikkonen, Heidfeld and Kubica apart from Schumacher simply because of affiliation to Sauber and Petronas and those were the good old days for us here unfortunately.

        I do agree on Malaysia having a bigger motorcycle culture but tbh when the economic downturn happened, a lot of motorsport-related sponsorship got cut off. We use to have a huge rallying thing going on but now it’s quieten down. Motorcycle however is still going due to cheaper cost and larger fanbase. Motogp also have a longer history here and they started hosting gp at smaller but more accessible venues like Shah Alam and Pasir Gudang where average locals can attend.

        Formula 1 unfortunately got viewed more as an elite sport for the rich and famous and average Malaysian can’t identify themselves with this. Same thing goes in Singapore too. Most average local Singaporeans view F1 as a glamour event for tourist and only goes for the concert lineups.

        As a fan, i had a lot of fun memories in Sepang and the racing was fun too well we had few good grand prix there. So it will be sad when this coming sunday ends.

        1. It’s quite impossible to have a car culture going in Singapore to feed the f1 viewership. Cars and being able to drive over there are bloody expensive things to have.

          1. Which is why they rely on concert to pull the locals in and tourist for the race. They do have some enthusiast but majority are bandwagon fans.

  2. A few days ago Toto Wolff adressed Bottas as Mercede’s 2nd driver. Bottas is now saying that he is only focused on getting ahead of Vettel in the championship.

    If the cars were painted with a shade of red we would be witnessing an uproar in the comment section and a article explaining how driver X is set to help driver Y on the championship.

    1. Bottas is a number 2 driver. It’s become pretty obvious now. Since the summer break, he has been anywhere close. I found it quite weird that he mentioned a couple times after Monza that he was really happy with the car, but was nowhere close to Lewis in the race.

      Could it be that Lewis has found another gear? Very Possible, but could it also be that there are some caveats on Bottas’ new contract? Wouldn’t you accept whatever just to stay in a drive at Merc?

      1. @jaymenon10, with regards to Bottas’s performance, one thing that has been common at the most recent races is that the tyres have been from the softer end of the tyre compound range, with either the ultra softs or super softs being the preferred tyres.

        Now, it has been noted that Bottas does sometimes struggle with setting the car up for the softest tyres in the compound range, which seems to be related to the pitch sensitivity of the W08.
        The harder compound tyres, which tend to have a stiffer side wall construction, prevent the car from pitching and moving about quite as much under the driver, particularly under braking and traction events. In that situation Bottas is quite happy with the car and tends to be closer to the pace of Hamilton and Vettel, since he prefers that more stable configuration.

        As the tyre compounds become softer and the tyre sidewall stiffness drops though, the car tends to move around more laterally and in terms of pitch, and the W08 becomes a more difficult car to drive on the limit. When that is the case, it seems that Hamilton, being more familiar with the behaviour of the recent Mercedes cars and being more comfortable with the way that the car is moving around beneath him, has been able to extract more from the car.

        Bottas, not having that background knowledge and not being quite as comfortable with the way that the car behaves as it pitches and slides around more, tends to find it more difficult to extract the maximum performance out of the car: furthermore, we know that Mercedes have found it a little difficult to avoid overheating to ultrasoft tyres with their car this year.

        Those two factors do seem to have caused Bottas quite a few problems in the most recent races, and might explain part of the gap between himself and Hamilton. To some extent, the problem has probably compounded itself due to the impact it has had on the relative confidence of each driver – Hamilton, having equalled and now broken the pole position record recently, will have had a number of races which have probably boosted his confidence, whilst Bottas, having had a slightly difficult race in Belgium and some difficulty in qualifying for the Italian GP, has probably lost a bit of confidence.
        It was commented at Williams that Bottas, if he was lacking a bit of confidence, did tend to drop off the pace a bit more noticeably than others, and that might have also contributed to him being a bit off the pace in recent races.

        1. If Bottas was on Par with Lewis it wouldn’t matter – drivers/observers excuses…..
          I think Bottas is good but lacks the final 10th Lewis has had throughout his career – Rosberg had to dig very deep to beat Lewis with something other than just driving….

      2. I still don’t think Bottas is doing a bad job at all considering he is against a driver that many say is the best one the grid. That driver is also in his 5th year with the team and Bottas is in his 1st. And I’ve seen some people say that Rosberg was only marginally off Hamilton in their first year together. But lets remember that Rosberg was in his 4th year with the team and Hamilton was in his 1st. And even When Hamilton had been in the team for 4 years when Rosberg managed to beat him, Hamilton still was overall betterb even though it was Rosberg’s 7th year. I think that even though Bottas seems to be doing a little worse now, he is still doing a very solid job against a very experienced team mate.

        1. @thegianthogweed Agreed, Bottas has done a solid job, need to see him develop next season and get closer to Hamilton. Returning from the summer break his deficit in qualifying to Hamilton has been embarrassing and (without looking at the data) probably the worst on the grid.

          At the moment Bottas appears to further away than Rosberg was to Hamilton (in qualifying and also race pace) however we are now in a more competitive situation where the Merc is not a large step ahead at most circuits.

      3. How close are the power outputs of the engines availble to the drivers? IIRC in the old days there was always that mysteriously more powerful motor that was given to the lead driver.
        (Rich dads in karting would buy a dozen brand new motors (1.5k each) and pick off the quicker ones)

        1. BigJoe, that is very hard to tell given that, even if they came out of the factory producing the same power, the relative usage of the engines (not just in terms of mileage covered, but also how the driver used them, such as more or less aggressive engine maps) is something that is not clear.

          Besides, these days I believe that it would be much more difficult for the team to favour a driver in that way. As I understand it, the engines are normally randomly allocated to the teams by the FIA when new engines are introduced – the intention is that, by doing so, the FIA maintains a certain parity in hardware between the factory teams and their customers.

      4. @jaymenon10
        Bottas lost his bottle after Hungary where he practically apologized for being handed his place back and media virtually booed him for undeservedly being gifted a podium. It’s reminiscent how a strong Rosberg fell off after being booed. Seems Bottas is very vulnerable and will never be the contender I thought he might, so no. 2 it is.

    2. @johnmilk hmm….I do not think so…I say this because most have come to the conclusion that Ferrari have already made Raikkonen de-facto number two driver. Except because it is Ferrari, they do not bother publicly musing about it or telling anyone, they just do it.

      Most of the complaints I have seen on forums seem to be focused on why Mercedes held out till now.

      1. It is so simple that there is no need for sneering at team politics.

        Both drivers cannot win the race or the drivers championship. Only one of them can. When a favorite emerges, it is natural, normal and graceful for the team to pull together and recognise this. Bottas is not an idiot, he knows that he does not have a very good chance of the WDC this year, he wants to maxamise his points but also to stay with the team long term which means continuing to score points and to help the team fight their rivals.

        People can write him off as a number 2 if they want but what other option does he have?

        If the roles were reverses and Hamilton were out of contention, he would not like it, but it would be Bottas that would be getting the help to win.

        You hedge your bets until a favorite emerges and then back him, to do any else would be to jeopardise your chances of winning the WDC ad the WCC.

        There is nothing to see here, no conspiracy, just the realities of racing in a team.

        1. Well that’s half true. Mercedes evidently also allow for two factors Ferrari tend to ignore: (1) keeping the second-placed driver motivated is also often important for the first-placed driver to maximize points against rivals from other teams, (2) DNFs etc. may lead to a collapse in points for their first-placed driver, reversing their positions. Hence their – I think genuine – insistence on ‘until mathematically impossible.’ Ferrari’s philosophy, I have to say right from the start of the season, seems to be to focus on one driver as the likely contender. The other gets the prize of an occasional win and a pay cheque. That’s just the way it looks.

      2. Ferrari do it because it works and they’re not scared of upsetting anyone. Other teams fanny about claiming they are giving drivers an equal chance, to look good. This cost McLaren dearly in the past.
        You’ve got to admire teams who really can provide 2 perfectly equal cars and engineer teams though. That’s a difficult task so I can see why Ferrari are happy to run one side of the garage that has an edge. Potentially less pressure on everyone too. We saw signs of Lewis under pressure from Rosberg having equal treatment and with Lewis having the biggest fan base from the fan and media side things it got quite ugly with the conspiracy theories. All that has gone now. Lewis looks much more comfortable. If it wasn’t for fans and PR a number 1 and 2 driver policy is the winner.

        1. BigJoe, I would disagree with the attitude that a No. 1 and No. 2 policy is always a winner, because there have been times where that policy of having a No.1 and No. 2 driver has backfired.

          Ferrari themselves experienced that in 1999 and 2008, where the driver that they had backed at the beginning of the season as their No.1 ended up falling out of contention and their No. 2 driver ended up being the one fighting for the title – the problem being that the No. 2 driver effectively started from a position further back than they might have done if they had been given more equal treatment to begin with, and it could be argued that lost ground helped cost them the title. By backing one driver from the outset, you run the risk that, if anything happens to that lead driver, then you’ve not got another driver who can take up that challenge in the meantime.

        2. Mercedes were also aware of the need for some competition and excitement over three seasons when they dominated most races. Including for self-preservation: the kind of walks in the park Schumacher enjoyed, with dominant car and submissive second driver, made Formula 1 a big turn off.

        3. I think Rosberg is faster than Bottas, he certainly pushed Lewis hard and as F1 history shows the relationship between teammates turns acrimonious when margins between the two are tight! Let’s hope Bottas can step up in 2018 and really challenge Lewis, currently he is falling some way short and driving like a great No. 2.

          Most of all I would like to see a competitive driver in the Ferrari seat as Vettel doesn’t like it! And the fireworks would be spectacular for a fan :)

        4. Ferrari don’t really have a No.1 & No.2 policy. Both drivers are always treated equally. They release cleverly worded press statements written by their secret psychological department designed to give the impression that one driver is being favoured, and occasionally deliberately compromise one driver’s strategy to make you think they favour the other. It’s all a big conspiracy aimed at bringing about a New Race Order and only I know about it, because I’m Special and have Secret Forbidden Knowledge. They spray chemtrails out of the back of the car too. And shot JFK. On the moon.

    3. Except in the context that Wolff used the word, when the primary subject of discussion was Hamilton, it’s clear that the meaning was his “other” driver, not his “number 2” driver. The stance of Mercedes has always been out in the open: drivers are free to race until such time as it becomes mathematically impossible for one of them to win the championship. Not that any of this will make any difference to the swivel-eyed, tin-foil-hatted brigade. Keep on banging that drum.

      1. Exactly.
        I do wonder what manner of complex keeps people fixated on who is the number 2 driver at Mercedes.

          1. It would have been quite something special, and very rare, if VB had come into Mercedes having never had a win-capable and WDC-capable car, and done enough to put LH mathematically out of it. Was anyone expecting that?

  3. Nico, when they said your head is your weak spot, that’s not what they meant.

    1. @dusty +1 haha that is gold

    2. Hahahhaha +1

  4. Michael Brown (@)
    24th September 2017, 1:59

    “Ricciardo wants sign Red Bull can fight for title by 2019”


    1. @mbr-9
      Not sure what’s unclear, they haven’t been in a title fight since 2013, although they’ve been getting steadily closer. He already has a contract for next year.

      1. Pre contract signed with Ferrari? No chance…haha..Seb wouldn’t want to be upstaged again..would look bad.

      2. @george, as Ricciardo’s contract expires at the end of 2018, I would read it as Ricciardo sending a sign to other teams that he will potentially be looking at switching to them in 2019, as well as putting Red Bull under a bit of pressure to both up their performance and their offers to him if they want him to stay for 2019.

    2. It is a very poor headline.

      1. Hans (@hanswesterbeek)
        24th September 2017, 5:21


        1. Adding an “a” (wants a sign) would have helped a lot.

          1. Nah, too wordy. ;) Actually, I had to read it twice maybe three times so you’re not alone. It’s a great headline..:)

      2. Right now I don’t see how any driver other than Verstappen (let down by reliability) can make ultimatums to their teams. Even then it’s not a classy move, Alonso has done it and look where that has gotten him.

        1. “Alonso has done it and look where that has gotten him.”

          a new engine maker that has won 10 F1 World championships in 25 years.

          1. And no championships in 11 years for a very championship-capable driver.

      3. Why do you think it’s a poor headline?
        Is it poor because it accurately describes the main article’s content?
        Is it poor because Ricciardo actually said that?
        Or is it poor because it’s referring to a relevant article about F1?

        1. None of the above. It’s poor because it’s ambiguous and doesn’t clearly convey it’s meaning. “Sign” has two possible interpretations – and in the context of a F1 headline, both are equally likely at this time of year. As Glacierre said, putting the “a” in would have clarified that “sign” was a noun, not a verb.
          Move on, nothing to see here…

          1. Yes but only one of the meanings of “sign” makes any sense in this sentence, to use the other would make the sentence Jibberish.

      4. Its not a poor headline I was just reading it totally wrong lol. I get it now I’ve woken up, my bad :-D apologies

    3. DR wants to see some signs that RBR can fight for the title by 2019.

      1. Ricciardo should be focusing on getting the MAX out of this car, not the 2018 or 2019 version.

        Do you see what I did there?

        1. Ricciardo should be focusing on getting Max out of the other car. His and RBR interests would be better served by a driver that actually contributes to RBRs bottom line.

  5. What I’ve been thinking about after watching some highlights from a couple of years ago, is Brawn’s quote about DRS needing to go.

    I think we could have better racing with a lot less drag.

    I say let’s keep those moveable flaps, but let’s get rid of DRS rules.

    1. What do you think would be the difference between having completely unrestricted DRS use, and not having it at all?

      What’s needed is far less aerodynamics fouling up the airflow for the following car and a relaxation of the rules which effectively outlaw ground effect to recover the lost downforce.

      1. I think the the set of rules we currently have were thought up to artificially manage the big advantage from opening the rear wing.

        I don’t know if it could be possible to have other “clickable” aero devices that have a smaller gain than the rear wing that could maybe allow for daring drivers to use it without being as dangerous. And then unrestricted use could give us some great battles.

    2. Roth Man (@rdotquestionmark)
      24th September 2017, 9:04

      If there was away of allowing the drivers to use DRS once a lap on any straight they wanted, that may at least add a strategic element. At least it could add a bit of variability, tactics and the ability to defend.

      1. Also programme DRS so when any steering input is applied it shuts down DRS (obviously with a little dead zone). That way it would be safe through Monaco tunnel, Eau Rouge etc. I think that should be applied anyway because then if you steer to overtake a car DRS is deactivated because it’s already done its job and may stop Cars from just sailing past. It would get them alongside as was always the plan.

        1. There may be merit in that over the current system. I’d still rather see DRS done away with altogether though and regs framed to produce a car that’s capable of following closely. i.e. ground effect.

          1. That’s the dream

  6. I am not very sure about these Ricciardo snippets. He doesn’t come across as a guy who would play mind games but the past couple of interviews he’s given he seems to be getting a bit ahead of himself unless he is actually saying something else and is being quoted in another way. For e.g., the comment about max being a tougher team mate than Vettel. Is he really trying to say that a rookie who is consistently beating him is better than a 4-time WDC? Perhaps that’s the only logical thing to say given he did beat Vettel in 2014 (notwithstanding all the bad luck that Vettel had through that season right from the first race) and is now being shown the ropes by a young charger outqualifying him more often than not. So he sees the need to remind people that he beat Vettel in 2014. I would really like to see him at ferrari in 2019 just so the score can be settled once and for all. And also, what’s with the vieled threats to RBR about challenging for the title etc? Surely when you are in F1, you should be grateful to be at a team that’s at the sharp end every single year consistently. It seems to me he’s got shades of Alonso in him. Perhaps RBR may actually win a WDC after he leaves and he’ll have to spend a lifetime justifying why he left them in the first place…

    1. In his 3rd season Verstappen can hardly being labelled as a rookie ofcourse, his age (19 until singapore) only reveales his potential for the coming years.

      If Ricciardo want a realistic shot at becoming WDC he needs more than his team mate being struck by bad luck, he needs to outperform his team mate on track…which isn’t the case this season. The only race Ricciardo was overall better was Hungary… well Verstappen only got as far as a couple of hundred meters.

      Another 6 races to go, Ricciardo needs some quali’s behind his name, beaten by 10-4 (or more) isn’t adding up for WDC aspirations.

      1. Ricciardo was clearly better in Italy too….

        That incident that Verstappen was involved in only happened because he took an unnecessary risk. Massa had the right to do what he did and considering it didn’t get investigated any further and Verstappen suffered, it was either just a racing incident or Verstappen to blame. If Massa was to blame and he got away with it like he did, there is no way he wouldn’t have got punished. So I can only say Ricciardo was better than Verstappen this race.

        1. Well Ben Rowe… in fact it was Ricciardo who ran into Grosjean, taking off his frontwing going three wide into the first corner. Ricciardo was lucky his tyres didn;t get punctured, Verstappen unlucky…no more than that.

          Maybe it was a racing incident, but a very avoidable incident, Massa (as often) pushed way to far, he even admitted he overshot the first corner before walking out on the interview. What caught my eye, technically speaking Verstappen had the right to the second turn (turn one is a left and then right turn), Massa pushed him off in the first turn, but they touched in the second.

          In Monza Verstappen won the quali battle and in the race he was as fast in traffic as Ricciardo was in open air.
          Verstappens extra pitstop cost him 62 sec, the same as the gap to Ricciardo at the finishline.

          Then again..Ric was lucky to escape and did a good and furhter flawless race, not especially being faster, but I would also give this one to Ricciardo..fair enough.

          1. I can’t see ho Ricciardo was to blame for that bit of contact with Grosjean. Grosjean had plenty of room on the inside. Well over a cars width extra that he could have driven in. Verstappen infact overtook Grosjean in a rather messy way later in the race clipping a bit of Grosjean’s front wing.

            Verstappen went on the outside of Grosjean into turn 1 and started turning right in forcing Grosjean to drive beyond the kerb. Verstappen kept turning in and clipped Grosjean’s front wing with his right rear tyre. If you think what Ricciardo did was a risk then just how was this not just as risky as what he did on Massa? Grosjean could have done exactly what Massa did to him which would have been allowed as Massa didn’t get a penalty so clearly wasn’t in the wrong. Instead, Grosjean locked up to try and avoid hitting Verstappen but Verstappen pulled infront of him just a bit too early. I don’t know why you would mention Ricciardo’s incident and not bring up this. Verstappen was clearly more to blame for this than Ricciardo was for the other as Grosjean could have gone far tighter with Ricciardo. It just luckily didn’t result in much damage.

            It isn’t just me that thought Verstappen had a bad race in Italy in terms of how good his result could have been. I have seen others that thought both these attempted overtakes were a mess. Some thought what he did on Magnussen was unreasonable too but I disagree with that.

            There has still been too little track time without one of them either having a grid penalty, a reliability problem in qualifying or the race, being involved in an incident or something else. The only race where neither driver had no trouble over qualifying and the race was Monaco. While Verstappen may possibly have been better, we have no proof to back that up. Ricciardo was extremely strong in the end of that race. All the other races, one of them has either started at the back because of problems or penalties or got involved in some sort of collision or caught out with reliability problems. It is so hard to believe that Monaco was the only race weekend where they both started and finished the race in similar positions.

            Because of this lack of equal opportunity over the weekend, I find it a bit much to judge who is actually better. It is actually only Verstappen who ruined his opportunity to have another fair fight with Ricciardo on 2 occasions in Hungary and Italy. I personally believe Ricciardo still has the edge even if Verstappen is that bit faster. But I think Ricciardo is a slightly better racer and overall a more solid driver. But just my opinion. But I couldn’t say that Verstappen clearly is better than Ricciardo as many people are. We need far more time to see them both on very similar strategies and starting in similar positions without problems during the race or qualifying before we make this verdict.

          2. I should add that I guess Ricciardo’s crash in qualifying certainly would have affected his result but he had to retire in the race that was nothing to do with his actions anyway.

            While Ricciardo crashed Again in Baku during qualifying, even if some luck was involved, his race was outstanding. I think Verstappen would have beaten him but we can never be certain. Ricciardo did suffer some bad luck that race so he could have probably won by a bigger margin if it wasn’t for something clogging up his air intake that he had to pit for.

    2. Perhaps that’s the only logical thing to say given he did beat Vettel in 2014 (notwithstanding all the bad luck that Vettel had through that season right from the first race) and is now being shown the ropes by a young charger outqualifying him more often than not.

      Yeah, but.

      What if at the end of 2017 Perez outscores Verstappen?
      We know there’s a big performance gap from front runners to midfield.

  7. I hadn’t been aware before that not drinking at all for some time can temporarily affect your eyesight. You always learn something new, LOL.

    1. So can drinkong tooomnuch

  8. tgu (@thegrapeunwashed)
    24th September 2017, 7:59

    It’s pretty obvious to me that Ricciardo ought to be pushing for a Mercedes or Ferrari seat. Because of his personality he can get along with the existing lead driver in the team, so the teams can replace their ‘number 2’ drivers with Ricciardo without worrying about their lead drivers flouncing out.

    For the same reason, Verstappen is stuck at Red Bull, for better or worse, until one of the top teams decides to hire him in place of their lead driver. Of course, he could always take a punt (a reasonable gamble, I reckon) on Renault coming good in the short term.

    I rate Verstappen as the better driver, but I think Ricciardo will have the easier path into the top teams.

  9. Being very blunt here but Ricciardo his time is coming to an end already. He has obviously been surpassed by Verstappen in both qualifying and race pace. Meanwhile the midfield holds some talent that is at least as good as Ricciardo or has the potential to become that good. Ahead of Ricciardo the more proven elite is still young enough to continue a few years after which said youngsters will have reached Ricciardo his level. Sains, Verstappen, Ocon, Vandoorne are among the future. In short Ricciardo shouldn’t act like he’s the only hot real estate in the game.

    1. @flatsix He’s not going to think along those lines, like Ocon, Sainz and Vandoorne are the future stars and his time is up. He’ll never win a championship if he thinks he can’t be the best.

      Take Rosberg’s example. He knew that he didn’t have Hamilton’s outright speed, but if he had started acting like a number two driver because of that…he wouldn’t have become a world champion.

      Anyway, Ricciardo is a fine driver at least on par with Rosberg in outright speed and much better in racecraft. I do think he has the talent to back up most of his ego.

    2. Sainz, Ocon and Vandoorne still have to prove themselves. That could be the case by 2019, but right now ricciardo is still miles ahead of them. I’d say Ricciardo is among the top drivers. But with limited seats I don’t know if he will get a WC car

      1. Not sure if I’d call it ‘amongst the top drivers’. Those are HAM, VET, VER, ALO (INPO).
        But he is there with HUL and PER (not so sure about BOT now)

        Agree that SAI and OCO still have a bit to prove, and VAN needs to continue his recent form.

        1. I don’t think Bottas should be rated any lower than Perez or Hulkenberg. He’s been pared up with a much better team mate than either of these 2 and he was doing pretty well against Hamilton at the start of the season. On the whole, Bottas has been quite a bit better than better than both Perez and Hulkenberg.

          Both Perez and Hulkenberg have had at leased 2 really bad races this season. Hulkenberg was terrible in China as he got 2 penalties and 4 penalty points in just one race. He then crashed out the race in Baku. Perez was very clumsy in Monaco and took out Kvyat and then also was very unreasonable in Spa too when against Ocon. The only race where Bottas made a silly mistake that he was totally responsible for was in China. But that didn’t cost him as much as Hulkenberg’s or Perez’s mistakes.

          But I think Ricciardo is overall slightly better than Verstappen. Verstappen may have slightly better pace in qualifying and often better race pace too. But Verstappen often risks too much. And he has cost the team close to 20 points down to his own actions in Hungary and Italy. Ricciardo may have crashed twice in qualifying, but on the first of these weekends, the car failed in the race anyway and the other, he made up for it by winning even though he suffered problems early on in the race with the air intake. Ricciardo is one of the best drivers on the grid when it comes to maximizing the result when given a chance to get a better result than expected.

          1. Imagine reliability would be no issue for RBR, Verstappen would be far ahead of Ricciardo.
            It’s not the numbers of DNF’s alone, but the positions in the race which makes Ver potential so much better.

            Check all the positions Ricciardo gained by others DNF, it’s a shocking amount. Ricciardo took but a few positions by overtaking.

            it’s often said…. Verstappen risks to much… is he really..? Monza maybe, but other than that..?

          2. Matn, I agree with what Eddi Jordan said on Channel 4. Verstappen going on the outside into turn one in Spain when there were already 2 cars on the inside just wasn’t going to work. Bottas could have braked later, But Verstappen and Kimi took a risky opportunity to overtake. Kimi couldn’t give any room to Bottas because Verstappen didn’t give Kimi enough room considering Kimi had Bottas on his inside. But Verstappen may not have been able to see Bottas but he should have known he was there. I don’t think it should have been anything other than a racing incident but Verstappen did take a big risk.

            Even though his start In Canada looked very impressive, he could easily have given himself a puncture in his rear left the way he overtook Vettel and clipped his front wing.

            I don’t think there is any evidence this year that we have actually seen that would mean Verstappen would be ahead of Ricciardo in the championship. We need far more time to see them both on track. Ricciardo is often much stronger towards the end of races and is usually more careful with his starts but then comes strong later such as in China. Ricciardo was much quicker than Verstappen near the end. And that is one of the few races we have seen them racing closely this year. Another race where Ricciardo was really strong near the end was Monaco.

            I don’t want to say that Ricciardo most certainly will be ahead if there was no reliability. But I think he will be and that is just my opinion. But I think it is a bit much to say that Verstappen would be far ahead of Ricciardo. There has been no proof.

          3. And to add to this, In Hungary, he lost a bit of speed due to going wide and his team mate started to pass him. So instead of just keeping calm and attempting to pass him later. He braked later than he should have done, locked up and crashed into him and took him out. That was most certainly an unnecessary risk.

          4. @thegianthogweed, Wow, just wow. Verstappen getting clipped by Vettel is Verstappen’s fault even though Verstappen was ahead and clearlky had the right the the racing line, but when Vettel slams into the side of Verstappen in the last race then it’s Verstappen’s fault because he should have braked (on the straight!) to yield to Vettel.

            Seriously, just wow. The level of cognitive dissonance going on there is staggering.

            But, you are right in one thing. Vettel does get involved in these first corner incidents way too often (even on the straight already) and it’s costing him dearly. Verstappen should learn from that and not make the same mistake as often himself

          5. @patrickl

            I never included anything about the latest race so I have no clue in the slightest why you mention that. I don’t even remember ever posting anything about Verstappen being to blame in Singapore as he just wasn’t. What I thought was just a little unreasonable in Canada was just before Verstappen’s pass on Vettel was complete, he pulled infront of Vettel damaging his front wing. Vettel wasn’t the cause of this as it was Verstappen who overtook him. Vettel couldn’t go any tighter because Bottas was on his inside. It was risky and he was lucky that doing this didn’t give him a puncture. I don’t see how anyone can blame Vettel for this. If Verstappen had just gone a bit wider or waited a fraction longer before pulling infront of Vettel, this contact won’t have happened. He did nothing wrong, it was just a huge risk that could have gone horribly wrong. But overall, he made the pass work quite nicely.

        2. Hang-on, Verstappen has A LOT of potential, but excluding reliability issues this year he takes ftoo many risks. I expect him to develop but for now, based on results he cannot be counted in the same breath as Alonso, Vettel and Hamilton (9 WDC’s between them). Yes he looks the real deal and with the right career moves should be the next triple WDC, but right now too many racing incidents.

          1. If VER had had less reliability issues this year he would’ve had more chances to break the car the old fashioned (dad’s) way.

    3. I’ll be quite HONest and express MY comPLEte irritation with those POSters WHO capitalise drivers NAMes in some RIDiculous PARody of TV GRAphics. It REAlly GETs UP my NOSe, I’m PREtty sure I’m NOT the ONLy one. If the DRIVers name is HAMilton, RAIkonnen or BOTtas then call them by their PROper NAMes. PLEase. In any event, typing like this takes far longer than using the proper names. Just don’t.

      1. typing like this takes far longer than using the proper names

        You are plain wrong there


        You spelt Raikkonen wrong, maybe you should have stuck to RAI eh?

        1. So did you. It’s Räikkönen.

          1. I know but I have no idea how to do the accent characters on my phone and not using the accents is pretty much accepted spelling on any English site. Raikonnen is not an accepted spelling.

            Regardless that wasn’t my point, my point was that not writing out the full name solves that issue.

      2. Thus spake ZAR.

  10. I completely agree with the COTD. Avoidable, but that’s how VET behaves. He won championships by doing that questionable move several times. That’s why I don’t few sorry for him if he loses the title as a consequence of the start last week.

  11. No please, no Sean Gelael in F1! We are just reaching a good level with the new generation. Verstappen, Sainz, Ocon, Vandoorne, and possibly Leclerc and Norris. Lets kick those Palmers, Strolls, Massas and keep Gelaels and the likes outside of F1.

    1. I don’t think Stroll has been doing badly at all recently. He’s actually got 5 more points than Verstappen in the past 8 races. He must be doing well! :D

      I know, Verstappen has had rotten luck overall this season but in Italy and Hungary, he probably cost the team getting on for 20 points. The fact Stroll has managed more points in this time doesn’t reflect on Verstappen’s driving overall though. He has had so many retirements outside of his control. But a lot of it is often partly related to risks he takes. Sometimes cautious drivers get better results. This is something that I think Ricciardo often does a better job than Verstappen at the starts.

      I think Stroll has the potential to improve a lot and I think he deserves to stay next year. He may have come in too early, but he is the only driver outside of the top 3 teams to have managed a podium this year. Mainly due to bad luck, Verstappen also only has 1 podium.

      I do think Palmer should be kicked out. Can’t really disagree with that. His only positives were his qualifying in Spa and his race in Singapore.

      I think Massa is better than a lot give him credit for. His bad luck hasn’t been as bad as Verstappen’s but it hasn’t been that far off. And it all seemed to happen to him when Williams were competitive. I think he has potentially missed well over 40 points this year. I am pretty certain he would be ahead of both Force India drivers anyway. He also seemed to have been involved in many incidents in the past few years that were not his fault that made his seasons look worse than they really were. I think it would be a bigger risk replacing Massa with Kubica who hasn’t been in F1 for simply years.

    2. @spoutnik Ageist much? F1 is not a carting championship and it rewards experience which comes with guess what, Age. In a multi million dollar industry, trust me, no one is going to bet the farm on unproven kids no matter how much potential they exhibit now and then, so try and respect the ‘elder’ generation even if they are at least 25 (shock!)

      1. @baron Yes, remarkable that people forget the prime age for a driver is 28-35, those years of experience kick into action with no loss of speed.

        1. I’m not going to say that you are one of these people, but many seem to say Massa is past it because of his age. Just because is is 36 rather than the prime age of 35 doesn’t mean he has had a sudden loss of speed. I think Massa is still going to be the best option for Williams out of who they are considering. He is very experienced and in my view, still has enough talent in him to do another decent job next year. His points don’t reflect on how well he has done this year.

          If some base age on how good F1 drivers are, then Alonso is past it now and Kimi is a really old man too :D

          Although Massa and Kimi are noticeably worse than they use to be, I still think they are better than many give them credit for. Although I think Massa is actually doing a better job for Williams than Kimi is for Ferrari. I think Kimi would be better off bringing some of his experience to a smaller team if Ferrari don’t keep him in 2019. That is if he still is in F1 in 2019. I have pretty much the same view on Massa. But I think he should stay with the team he is in.

          1. @thegianthogweed Massa looks like the safest option for Williams, Di Resta is a risk would he be any faster? Kubica is interesting for them, but a risk again. Massa looks like the safest option for Williams in 2018 assuming he wants to keep racing. Yes he was beaten by Bottas, but he has still delivered points regularly this year.

            I don’t think age plays a part with Massa, he just seemed to lose a bit of speed after his terrible accident. Kimi is fine, just wasting that Ferrari seat so have no chance of winning the WCC while he occupies it.

          2. @ju88sy

            I think it is worth allowing Di Resta and Kubica to do some tests, but as they have hardly had any recent experience, I very much doubt they instantly will be better than Massa. As I have said in other posts, I think Massa has potentially missed over 40 points and would quite possibly be ahead of both Force India drivers due to the few big mistakes they have made this season. Massa may not be outstanding, but to me, his experience shows and he doesn’t often make costly mistakes. I think he only noticeably worse race this year was in China. He looked at his best I’ve seen him in a few years on race day in Baku. Every restart, he was brillient and a couple of times, he nearly got past the Ferrari’s. He very nearly got past Vettel at one point. I think he very unfortunately missed out on 2nd place there. While Stroll is at leased decent now, the fact that he is so close to Masssa in the points really doesn’t indicate that Massa is going downhill. At leased I don’t think so. I think he’s been better this year than the last couple.

      2. @baron @ju88sy There is a misunderstanding. I never talked about replacing experienced drivers (I’m rooting for Alonso). I just said that the current new generation of drivers is quite good but Gelael isn’t. The patronizing tone is unneeded too.

        1. @spoutnik Let’s hope the Fried Chicken money doesn’t buy a seat!

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