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Red Bull admit atmosphere has changed since Ricciardo departure

Red Bull admit atmosphere has changed since Ricciardo departure

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Red Bull admit atmosphere has changed since Ricciardo departure

Red Bull admit atmosphere has changed since Ricciardo departure

Helmut Marko, head of the Red Bull driver development program, says that the atmosphere within the team changed after the departure of Daniel Ricciardo to Renault for 2019.

Ricciardo is not particularly known for being the most serious of characters within the Formula One paddock, his quick wit matching his pace on the track. Losing a character like 'The Honey Badger' would leave a hole in any any team, but at a team where an extra emphasis always seems to be placed on 'fun', this loss was always going to be felt more.

"The atmosphere in the team is good, but it is not as jovial since he went," said Marko in an interview with Germany's Motorsport-Magazin.com. "It was a bit of a shock to the whole team when he went to Renault.

"He is also one of the fastest drivers and can catch up excellently when he needs to. His jokes are also missed."

Replaced initially with Frenchman Pierre Gasly, for the first 12-Grand Prix of the year before Gasly himself was replaced by Alex Albon, Red Bull have not found an instant replacement for race winner Ricciardo.

Ricciardo reveals key to midfield successRead more

Gasly failed to score a podium with Red Bull, although he would reach the top-three for Toro Rosso in Brazil, and Albon too has failed in this endeavor.

Despite this, Marko feels that Albon is on the correct path.

“Alex has done very well,” Marko added. “He joined the team without having tested the car and he was in the points at every race except Brazil, where he was hit by Hamilton.

“He is self critical and knows where he can improve and it is all very positive. We hope that he will be a good team-mate for Verstappen this year.”

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