Max Verstappen has suggested that Daniel Ricciardo would struggle to match him in equal machinery if they were to race as team-mates now.
The pair raced together at Red Bull for three seasons, before Ricciardo ultimately decided to depart the team for Renault due to concerns about Verstappen being favoured.
Ricciardo outscored Verstappen in 2016 and 2017, but the Dutchman outscored the Aussie in 2018 (their final year as team-mates.)
Speaking this week, Verstappen said he believes he has significantly improved since he raced alongside Ricciardo at Red Bull three years ago.
“I think I also got better eventually, because I have more and more experience,” said Verstappen.
“So, I find it also difficult to really compare fairly, you know.
“I find it a bit unfair to say that he was maybe more close, and I think there are a lot of things to it.
“For sure, at the time, Daniel is, you know… he’s still quite a bit older and more experienced, but I think I gained a lot of experience in the last few years, while in the beginning of course I was still quite new and I didn’t really have a lot of car racing experience, because I had one year in F3, basically one year in Toro Rosso and then moved to Red Bull.
“And I definitely think there the big jump started to happen, which I think is a natural process in the first five years of your F1 career,” he added.