Daniel Ricciardo reveals why he expected ‘tense relationship’ with Sebastian Vettel

Sebastian Vettel spent a single season racing alongside Daniel Ricciardo at Red Bull before his move to Ferrari in 2015.

2014 was a big year for Daniel Ricciardo, as after three years at Toro Rosso, the Australian was promoted to the Red Bull senior team to partner Sebastian Vettel, a man who was at the top of his game at that point.

Ricciardo outscored Vettel in their only season working together, before the German decided to pursue a fifth world championship with Ferrari, but the pair enjoyed a respectful relationship together while battling Mercedes.

Red Bull had been the home of a somewhat toxic driver pairing, with Vettel’s relationship with Mark Webber turning sour before the latter retired, and while Ricciardo has said that he was braced for similar treatment, he was pleasantly surprised by the respectful nature of the German.

“Obviously I saw a little bit of the Mark/Seb rivalry, but at the time I was no longer reserve driver, I was more competing on the track at Toro Rosso, so I wasn’t really in the know,” explained Ricciardo.

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“I didn’t really know how to read [it] and I thought ‘okay, maybe the relationship might be tense’.

“We would battle, even like Monza – Monza I did that kind of switchback pass on him, sold him the dummy, and I feel that at the time that was one of the first dummies to be sold.

“You do that on your team-mate, doesn’t always feel that nice, but I remember after the race he came up, shook my hand [and] said nice move.

“I remember when he came up to me, then I was like, yeah, you’ve got to respect that.”

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After leaving Red Bull, Vettel had spells with Ferrari and Aston Martin, before calling time on his legendary Formula 1 career at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix this year.

In the wake of the 35-year-old’s retirement, Ricciardo has paid tribute to his former teammate, suggesting that he will go down in history as one of the greats.

“Record aside, one of the best to ever do it,” claimed Ricciardo.

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“As a driver, it’s not just about setting a quick lap, it’s about how you work with the team around you, how you push your team.

“That was the first thing I noticed when I worked with him.”

Ricciardo also finds himself not on the 2023 grid, after McLaren made the decision to replace the 33-year-old with young Oscar Piastri, but while the Australian plans to return in 2024, Vettel has confirmed that he has no intention to race in F1 again, much to the disappointment of Formula 1 fans worldwide.