Verstappen has 'clearly moved' ahead of Ricciardo

Sunday, 13 january 2019, 10:06 , by Martin Macdonald

Red Bull chief Helmut Marko believes that Max Verstappen's talent has "clearly moved" ahead of that of Daniel Ricciardo, as the Dutchman comes off a season in which he finished two places ahead of Ricciardo in the F1 driver's championship.

Verstappen is viewed as one of the most talented drivers to come through the ranks of the sport in recent years and a potential champion of the future.

Both he and Ricciardo won two Grand Prix races last season, but Verstappen earned nine more podium spots than his team-mate. During the campaign, it was announced that Ricciardo would be leaving the team to join Renault for 2019.

Marko thinks that, after a couple of seasons of parity, Verstappen has now surpassed the ability of the Australian.

"There is specific data," Marko told Autosport.

"In qualifying the gap to Ricciardo is greater. In the race he's also a bit faster.

"The strange thing is Max sometimes slides more, but still manages to keep the tyres alive. That has developed. When he came to us, it wasn't like that yet.

"In the second year [2017] Ricciardo dropped back a bit, but he recognised that and then he worked intensively with his physio and other things on himself, so he came close to Verstappen again.

"But in the second half of the 2018 season Verstappen has clearly moved away."

Verstappen finished the season strongly after a poor start which was littered with high-profile crashes, and Marko has revealed how the 21-year-old was able to recover.

"The basic problems were a certain lack of control and impatience," Marko said of Verstappen's early-season issues.

"The point is Verstappen is fast enough. He doesn't have to constantly prove that he's the fastest. He doesn't need that. He already has an image in the duel that it's better not to mess with him."

MORE: Hamilton might finish his career at Ferrari
MORE: Verstappen 'punishment' criticised by Formula E driver

Related news

Comments (15)

  • Jamie Paget
    Really??? Let's add Dan's retirements in and see where that gets us..... wait....... does that change things a little............
  • Nigel Rose
    Dan was totally smashing Max in the first half ... easy. Until the team decided that’s not on.
  • Michael Hogan
    Yeah he sure beat the hell out of Dan .... just look at the crashes ended up miles in front on that one
  • Sean Unwin
    Helmut Marko is a blight on F1. Screwed over Mark Webber and did the same to Danny Ricciardo.
  • Rob J Webb
    You mean the team put their best parts in Max's car, and Danni Ric's doesn't finish.
  • Per Axblom
    Hehe in the second half? When they let Dan down how many times?
  • Matt McElvany
    Yea, not hard to do when he Dan retires like 438 times.
  • Kevin Cashman
    I think you're wankers for even posting such crap...
  • Andrew Carroll
    Helmut Marko still a flog , so happy Dan is out of that team.
  • Tony Webb
    The sooner Helmut Marko does 1 the better
  • Laz Till
    Il ask Dan that one?? lol
  • Henk Poolen
    Yes by miles
  • Kristian Finn
    Troy Brudenell Adrian Finn
  • Pedro Bustos
    Just Marko propaganda....

Write a comment