Ricciardo to test for Red Bull at Silverstone
Red Bull Racing
Posted By: James Allen  |  16 Jul 2013   |  4:08 pm GMT  |  106 comments

Toro Rosso’s Daniel Ricciardo will test for Red Bull at this week’s young driver test at Silverstone, boosting his hopes of landing a race seat with the reigning world champions next season.

The three-day Silverstone test, which starts on Wednesday, was originally intended for young drivers, however race drivers are being allowed to take part so they can collect data for Pirelli following a series of tyre failures at last month’s British Grand Prix.

A seat at Red Bull next season alongside reigning world champion Sebastian Vettel has opened up after Mark Webber announced he would leave the sport to join Porsche in sportscar racing.

Ricciardo, 24, and 2007 world champion Kimi Raikkonen are in contention to replace the Australian.

Ricciardo will get behind the wheel of a Red Bull on Wednesday afternoon with Red Bull development drivers Antonio Felix da Costa and Carlos Sainz Junior, son of rally legend Carlos Sainz, also getting an opportunity to sample F1 machinery.

Race drivers Webber and Vettel will get an afternoon each in the car to work on tyre development.

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Great stuff Dan!

A well earnt opportunity for the lad from Perth.


If I was boss of Red Bull my take would be this (choosing Ricciardo over Kimi)

1. We can pay Ricciardo less than Kimi (at least in initial deal)

2. We can get Ricciardo to do more media commitments and be generally more marketable and approachable.

3. We can let Ricciardo warm into the position easier by being more compliant with his role as no 2 in his first contracted Red Bull year.

4. Ricciardo would be less likely to argue or go against team orders or instructions.

5. Ricciardo would in year one be less likely to argue on track for position.

6. Is going to be lower maintanence from a management perpective.

Personally I feel Vergne is a good pickup for another team if Toro Rosso won’t give him another year, because his pure ability as Rachael mentioned probably eclipses Daniel in as much as he has displayed he is consistently quicker than Daniel in these type of conditions. Remember this is JEV’s first year in F1 whereas it is Ricciardo’s second and development input is an acquired technique.

Perhaps Vergne was in the right place at the wrong time, because my gut feeling is with another year, JEV may have eclipsed Ricciardo.

We have to remember we are still only half way through the season, Vergne has more Championship points and has had a couple of very unlucky races recently.


I wonder, how much is that a hurry up for Kimi to make a decision? However, I think Kimi should stay with Lotus. If he wins the WCH with them he will be a legend, if he wins with RBR it will be (partly) down to the car. Also, he is almost a global brand at Lotus on his own right, something Hamilton really would like to achieve, with RBR he would have to join the RB family. The Q is, can Lotus stay close to the top for a longer period of time and give Kimi a competitive car?


Hi guys,

When Mercedes ran their illegal Pirelli tyre test, Ferrari and RB protested that it gave Mercedes an advantage because race drivers were doing the testing.

Now that the FIA has responded to the Pirelli exploding tyres saga by allowing F1 drivers to test, McLaren are not using any F1 drivers, and Alonso is not bothered to show up.

Is it the case that there was really not much advantage using F1 drivers? Or is the use of one driver, Massa, sufficient to give the team good data? Or has McLaren really given up on 2013 such that neither race driver is bothered to show up?


What chance Webber stepping out of F1 before the end of the year, and Dan stepping into the Red Bull? Now that he’s announced he’s leaving, Webber has zero chance of getting support for a tilt at the WDC, and STR have a few others they can put in their car for the rest of the season.


I considered that option too however I reckon TR need all the WCC points they can muster. Points = money. I suppose they could swap Mark and Dan around if RB lock in the WCC early 😉


(Note: I’ve been a huge Webber fan since he started in F1 and I’m gutted he’s leaving at all. When you watch him fight his way back through the field at race after race, you wonder why he’s leaving F1 in the first place.)


It appears that Vettel fears Kimi as team-mate.


Haven’t seen anything to suggest that.


Hey Bart, what do you think now, given the latest development in the drivers market?


Carlos Sainz, his Red Bull contacts and father must be working hard to get him a test?


Looking at the championship points at present Kimi is on target for 250+ points this season. Why would RBR nominate a target of 200 points and sign Kimi. Do they expect him to go backwards?

If RBR wanted Kimi they would say something like; “We expect MW’s replacement to be battling for race wins and the WDC”.

Clearly this is RBR’s not-so-subtle way of telling the world that Kimi is out of the picture (prior to an official announcement at a more appropriate time).


Good move Red Bull

Better move than the Kimster

Kimi would never get the best car while Seb and Marko are there

Tornillo Amarillo

I would like Ricciardo or Kimi in Red Bull as a number 2 driver… because Mercedes has 2 number 1 driver. I think the best nr 2 for Red Bull after Mark is Hulk, but it seems Hulk will be a weird case in F1 history.

Yeah, if you want to be a champion you have to be in top form in a top team in the right moment. Hulk is not getting the top team yet, Sauber is falling, maybe no vacancies at Lotus in 2014, is him sitting again as a reserve driver?

Crazy or you are in a top team or a huge pay driver -as Chilton, Maldonado, Sergio and Sergei- or you are lost in the middle of nowhere as Hulk, Kobayashi, Alguersuari, B.Senna, Kovalainen, etc.

Not good, not what fans want.


I would not rule out out Mr Grosjean’s seat being vacant yet.


What does everyone think Ricciardo should do if Kimi does take the RBR seat. Kimi would surely sign for no less than 2 years & I think Vettel still has 2 years to run meaning no seat available at RBR until 2016.

Should Ricciardo stay with Torro Rosso?

That would mean 4 years in a seat meant for developing drivers. I don’t think Helmut Marko would give him 2 more years, IMO Buemi & Algesuari were lucky to get a third season.

Surely Ricciardo would need to look elsewhere.

Lotus would have a spare seat but I think they would prefer a more experienced driver to compliment Grosjeans “style”.

So where else? Would any other team take him on?


It’s great to see Dan get a chance to prove himself.

Not only is he a talent in car, he is also VERY likeable.

Is there anyone out there that doesn’t like him? He always has a (massive) smile on his face.


Don’t know why people keep forgetting Ricciardo lost to Vergne last season and is losing again this season!


twice now ricciardo was in a good point scoring position and his car failed.


JEV is a seat-of-the-pants driver, who is quick in slippery conditions. Vergne can’t perform the test and development work as well as well Dan. RBR have clearly stated that they are looking for a SECOND driver who can do the hack work for their superstar.

One thing a lot of people have failed to acknowledge was that MW was at RBR years before VET, and he did a great job working with the engineers to develop a championship winning car for VET to step into at the right time. If Vettel had a donkey as a team mate, he couldn’t have won 3 championships. Instead Alonso would be a four-time WDC.


If Alonso had a donkey of a team in 05 and 06 he would have no WDC titles, whats your party


I cannot agree. Surely that “great job” would have led to something fruitful for Red Bull before 2009?


Good post.

Too bad VET is such a brilliant driver, else Mark would have had the car tailored to him instead of his team mate, and with his ability (up with the best of the rest) would have a number of WDC’s next to his name.


If mark was the number one driver at RBR jenson would have a second WDC and Alonso a third and fourth. Newey is nothing without Seb!!! Well maybe that’s over the top but still mark never finished runner up in the WDC and from what I hear the car is designed and the drivers are expected to adapt not the other way round.


Points only tell part of a story…


What happens if Kimi walks in and wipes the floor with Vettel driving a Redbull? I don’t think Redbull Mangament are going to allow their Golden Boy to be embarrassed or will he do it to himself. Kimi will stay at Lotus. Why destroy what could be a great batlle for a few years as Lotus versus Redbull versus Mercedes versus Ferrari or whoever! Do we really need to No 1’s in a team? It’s all bout team rivalry……Best policy only one Rooster allowed in the hen’s house.


What happens if Kimi comes in and wipes the floor with Seb ………. I’ll eat my hat and I dont even have a hat!


So you don’t think a car is adapted to suit a driver. Ok, you must be correct, and here I was thinking that drivers asking for changes and having input into development actually had some reasoning behind it.

Silly me.


“What happens if Kimi walks in and wipes the floor with Vettel driving a Redbull?”

That’s about as likely as Ricciardo walking in and wiping the floor with Vettel. Or Vergne walking into Ferrari and wiping the floor with Alonso.


So if I get you correctly Kimi would wipe the floor with Vettel because he would extract more performance out of the RedBull, as right now Vettel is not? or suddenly with Kimi there Vettel would deteriorate in form?


I don’t think they mind at all, considering how open Vettel to Ferrari move.


Ricciardo has already driven for Red Bull in a young driver test.

From memory it was in 2010 when it was held in Abu Dhabi and he set very good lap times comparable to Webber and Vettel.

It was these lap times that gave Red Bull the confidence to push him into a HRT drive for the back end of 2011 and then onto STR.


as far as I remember he took half a second off Sebs quali time but conditions were different so tomorrow will be a better comparison. I think Lotus will be competitative next year so I hope they either keep Kimi or get a competitive driver. I think it’s good when all the top drivers are at different teams and it would be great to see how daniel gets on in a redbull.


Perhaps this move is to nudge Kimi to sign quickly.


Helmut Marko has stated that he wants Sebastian Vettel’s next teammate to do plenty of “simulator work” while working “awfully hard” with the team’s technicians. This appears to be pointing to the fact that talks between RBR and RAI have broken down or reached a stalemate.

“Red Bull’s analysis points to a target for its second driver of 200 points”. RBR have nominated a target of 200, purely based on Webber’s past performance, nothing more. Don’t put too much credence in the actual number. The key to interpreting the real meaning of the story is in the wording; SECOND DRIVER.

RBR have been working with RIC for years and they are well aware of his technical abilities. Daniel’s qualifying performances this season demonstrate that he is fast and is able to pull out a quick lap on-demand. Daniel’s racecraft should not be questioned. Anyone who can drive around Alonso on the opening lap in Germany has it in spades.

Clearly Red Bull have finally worked out that they need a team player, who can develop the car and support their superstar driver. After all MW has performed this role brilliantly in the past, and look at the success it has brought them.

The only question that remains, is how much of Daniel’s race performance in 2013 is due to car and how much is due to driver? We will know the answer by the end of this week.


Where does this 200 points figure quote come from?


yes, kimi is fast, but i really don’t rate him anywhere near as much as a lot of people. yes, he won a WDC, by what margin? that win certainly wasn’t what i would call ’emphatic or masterly superior’.

if redbull have any sense they will take ricciardo on board and groom him for the time when vettel cashes out. DR has all the ingredients for a successful career at the very top. he just needs further grooming.

hiring kimi is problematic and i just don’t see him cutting the mustard in a team that is 100.1% built around the german.


Yeah, I don’t think you can count yourself as a good driver until you’ve won the title by a margin of at least a million points.


Following that logic, Hamilton’s WDC wasn’t so superior either. That sounds silly.


It wasn’t superior. He scraped through bythe good grace of Timo Glock.


Adding to the “wasn’t anything special” list would be 2 of Vettels WDCs!


yes fireman, you’re right, hamiltons WDC wasn’t anything special either.


Great response 😀


Ricciardo will not be driving for Red Bull next year. This is just the way of Red Bull showing the wide world that they gave him an opportunity, they analysed him but ….


No matter whom gets the #2 spot they will be outshone by Vettel.


Go Dan !



Great guy


Its common sense really, Kimi is really on for the seat the moment he decided on his F1 return. I think its been the intension by both Red Bull and Kimi’s group all along years before. Things are just not legally/finacially correct last year and this year. They have their reasons for the timing. Not 100% sure, but the partnership is the logical and practical thing to do. Both in the commercial/marketing and technical perspective. All the chatter maybe just to spin things but I think the decision has been made awhile back. Most of time its been like that in F1.


I also disagree on the point that RBR arranged the seat for Kimi prior to his return to F1. The reality is that the seat was Mark’s for as long as he wanted it, and the decision was entirely Mark’s to retire. No-ne knew that Kimi’s comeback would have been so successful.


I don’t agree it’s practical or logical. I think Kimi would fit the brand well but from a sporting point of view expect RBR to adopt the Shuey/Ferrari model with a team built around a strong No.1 rather than the McLaren approach of two strong No.1’s fighting it out.


Vettel came to the team after Webber, and although many suspected Vettel was good they couldn’t be sure he was this good. Webber had no intention of being No. 2 to Vettel and the team has suffered the infighting that resulted. I expect RBR to recruit a second driver with everyone on the same page as to his status within the team.

As a special talent Vettel is often courted, primarily by Ferrari. He is mentored by Schuey who I have no doubt is advising him to put pressure on the team to recruit a compliant No. 2 not a competitive No.1. RBR has become a winning machine with the key formula Newey, Horner, Red Bull money and Vettel. They won’t want to lose Vettel and I expect them to now form the team around him to secure him for the long term. Vettel loves the numbers, hence the fact that he goes for fastest laps when the GP is won. He wants 8 World Titles minimum and copyinghow his mate Shuey did that is the best way.


You missing the point, where RB want WCC way more than WDC. And their fifth consecutive WCC more and more in danger as the best driver line up on the grid picking up the pace – Rosberg and Hamilton.

This is what Horner implies when he mentions: “We need two best drivers.”

This is further more important as they need drivers who are proved to outperform the car if next year changes do not go according to plan. There are not many such drivers on the grid.


I think it’s you who has missed the point. DR is a fast driver, albeit one that will come into the team on the basis of being Vettel’s wing man. KR is not that driver, he’s in the autumn of his career. RBR has been stung by the infighting between drivers. Vettel is the star driver in that team and Horner won’t want to upset him by employing another No. 1 driver and risk situations like those seen between Vettel and Webber where they take each other out or come very close to doing so. To win the WDC and the WCC first you have to finish. DR is a fast driver and I will only develop further in the same team as Vettel to the point where ultimately he may take over as team leader. You’re assuming that he won’t be as fast as KR but I suspect that this won’t be the case. I predict DR will get the seat and plenty of 1-2’s and team harmony will result.

The other glaring fact you’re missing here is that RBR is an experiment. They’re running 2 F1 teams for a reason. It’s a concept in driver training that has served them well and more crucially that they believe in and have invested heavily in. The reason they won’t employ KR is because he doesn’t drive a Torro Rosso.


I think all teams want to race the best drivers available. The problem is, you need also drivers that aren’t mentally crushed after losing to their teammate. Few such drivers exist. Kimi is one of them.

I guess the only question is can Vettel take it if he loses races or the WDC to Kimi.


I read somewhere that Red Bull are looking for someone who can score at leeast 200 points consistently. This is the amount they think they need from a second driver to win the Constructor’s Title. Webber has given them this the first two seasons, failing only last year. And with half of the season still to go, he’s got a shot at hitting 200 this year, as well.

So the question becomes: is Daniel Ricciardo good enough to get 200 points a year in a Red Bull? This would basically mean that he would be finishing in the top-5 consistently, grabbing a few podiums, with maybe a win or two sprinkled in. He’s definitely shown he has speed and can qualify the car like he would need to. I have no doubt about that. But honestly, I think he needs to develop his race craft. But this is something he can develop, and I think it’s worth it to Red Bull to give him a chance and develop him on the big squad. They’re not going to get Kimi to play second fiddle, and I don’t think he wants to leave Lotus. Vergne hasn’t shown enough speed. I don’t see anyone else being in the frame, as Red Bull doesn’t seem to want to stray too far from the nest on this one. (And Kimi is the limit of the nest.)


I read / heard many years ago that if you are a good qualifier then you can be taught racecraft and so become a good race driver. Qualifying is about confidence & committment at the edge of your / your car’s ability. That’s not something that flows easily from mere experience / tuition.

If you don’t got the raw speed in the first place then you don’t got nothing.

Dan would seem to be better than JEV on this point.

Grosjean is some kind of lesson as a driver who hasn’t quite mastered the racecraft bit despite obviously being very quick on his day.


People have been saying for years now that ANYONE can win in a Newey designed Red Bull. And when Vettel was the same age Ricciardo is at present, he was well on his way to wrapping up his second WDC. So in theory there is no reason why Danny should not be able to come in and quickly mimic Webber’s performances, or even surpass them.

Unless people were wrong about the greatness of the RB cars all this time …


I wonder what is RedBull looking for this time? When DC left, Vettel was the obvious choice against Bourdais.

Then, Buemi and Alguersuari didn’t make the cut probably because Webber was not ready to leave.

Now, it is Buemi, Ricardo and Vergne’s chance. RB can also looked at Kubica and Raikkonen.

The driver I want is Raikkonen because I want him in the best car.

The driver I think is most likely going to be in is Ricardo because he is fast and sufficiently mature.


what if Da Costa outshines him… they are scheduled to run on the same day… maybe Red Bull are actually assessing Da Costa for a post-Kimi (2014-2015) period.


If that happens I expect them to file it under ‘nice problems to have’.


Exactly – with this test they have a lot if “nice problems”


Well, this is a possibility. I wouldn’t say it’s likely because Ricciardo has 2 years of full-time racing experience in F1, and experience in an F1 car is everything for drivers on their way to getting up to speed. If he sets times in the neighborhood of Ricciardo, then that is something to take note of regarding da Costa.

It’s also very possible that they will be putting Ricciardo not through hot laps, but through a real testing program to see where he is at in terms of giving feedback. I would be much more concerned about seeing this from Ricciardo in this test than seeing how fast he can go, because I know he can go very fast in qualifying. I would, though, be interested in his feedback on the car for short runs or to see what he is doing on short runs to get one-lap pace, as this is the area where they’re behind Mercedes at the moment and it is the area where Ricciardo has shined this year.


Surely RB technical staff chat to TR staff?

I think his ability to provide technical feedback and work with the engineers would be well established by now. This test will probably assess his one lap and long run pace.

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