Marko: Finally we have an Australian who starts who can put Sebastian under pressure

Formula One World Championship, Rd18, United States Grand Prix, Qualifying, Austin, USA, Texas, Saturday 16 November 2013

Red Bull Team Consultant Helmut Marko has hailed the start of Daniel Ricciardo’s tenure with the world champion team by slamming his predecessor Mark Webber.

“Finally we have an Australian who starts [races] well and can put Sebastian [Vettel] under pressure with fair methods,” Red Bull’s always-outspoken director is quoted by Germany’s Auto Motor und Sport.

Actually, Ricciardo is yet to put a single point in his 2014 account, despite a strong drive to his later disqualified podium in Melbourne and a competitive, yet horror race in Malaysia.

And for his Sepang troubles, featuring the botched pitstop, he will start Sunday’s Bahrain Grand Prix ten places down the grid.

F1 Grand Prix of Malaysia - Race

But Ricciardo insists: “I am pleased with my performance so far, but I do need to work on some areas. Seb has been faster than me in some places.

“Obviously I’d love to have points, but most of all I’m very happy with what I’ve done behind the wheel.

“I have showed the team that they made a good choice.”

As for the botched pitstop at Sepang, Ricciardo said: “The team has assured me that it won’t happen again.

“We are going to build in a bigger safety margin, because the punishment for mistakes is brutal,” said Ricciardo. (GMM)

Subbed by AJN.