• Red Bull

Ricciardo never doubted challenging Vettel

ESPN Staff
June 1, 2014 « McLaren will not settle for more of the same | Alonso hopes to be closer to podium in Canada »
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Daniel Ricciardo says he always believed he could be competitive alongside Sebastian Vettel if Red Bull delivered a quick car in 2014.

Ricciardo has been one of the standout performers this season, seemingly adapting to life alongside the four-time world champion with ease in his debut season at Red Bull and currently sits nine points ahead of Vettel in the drivers' standings. Vettel has struggled with the RB10 this year compared to Ricciardo, who thinks he is already performing like he knew he could.

"I didn't really have any visions exactly on how it would go, what the race results would be or what the qualifying score would be, but I knew that I have some talent and obviously I've got a bit of experience now in Formula One," Ricciardo said. "I feel I'm still growing and getting better as a driver as well, so I knew coming into the season with the team behind me and sort of a new opportunity, that I would be able to challenge Seb."

Ricciardo admits he is pleased to have been able to repay Red Bull's faith so quickly after his promotion from Toro Rosso.

"Did I think it would be going, let's say, as well as it was now? I don't know. But I knew if I had everything underneath me I'd be capable of getting the results. Fortunately the team saw that as well [when they signed him] back in September ... so it's coming good."

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