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Pressure builds on Ricciardo as Red Bull boss labels him 'too slow'

Pressure builds on Ricciardo as Red Bull boss labels him 'too slow'

Pressure builds on Ricciardo as Red Bull boss labels him 'too slow'

Pressure builds on Ricciardo as Red Bull boss labels him 'too slow'

Red Bull's Helmut Marko hasn't held back in his criticism of Daniel Ricciardo, who has struggled since making his return to the F1 grid this season with Visa Cash App RB.

The 'Honey Badger' could only manage 18th during Saturday's Qualifying session for the Australian Grand Prix - which was 10 places lower than his teammate, Yuki Tsunoda.

READ MORE: Ricciardo 'unsure' why he's well off the pace after qualifying nightmare

The Japanese driver also made Q3 in Bahrain and has shown flashes of speed, while Ricciardo was halted by a slow pit-stop and a clumsy spin in Saudi Arabia last time out.

Both drivers are vowing for a potential opening with Red Bull for the 2025 season and beyond, but they need to be on top form to have any chance of being in with a shot of securing the drive.

Daniel Ricciardo must improve if he wants a Red Bull seat
Helmut Marko is keen to push Red Bull contracted drivers

READ MORE: Verstappen predicts exciting Australian GP due to KEY Red Bull 'question mark' - Top Three verdict

Marko keen on Ricciardo improvement

Red Bull advisor Helmut Marko has now assessed their performances so far this year and is mindful that improvement is required from Ricciardo in all aspects of the race weekend.

“There's a lot at stake for [Tsunoda and Ricciardo]. Both might be hoping for a seat at Red Bull, and one should be well ahead of the other,” said Marko.

“So far Ricciardo is a bit behind. But let's put it this way: Tsunoda's qualifying speed is OK. But in the race, both are too slow. I think one point would have been possible in each of the first two races.

“It's very difficult to score points behind the top five [teams] and, when you have an opportunity, you can't afford to make mistakes. You have to test the decisions in the absolute right order.”

With Liam Lawson waiting in the wings, pressure could yet mount on Ricciardo and Tsunoda if they fail to deliver to the levels expected by Red Bull.

Above all, the team will be hoping that they can secure points in the crucial constructors’ championship fight which could have major implications on their future competitiveness.

READ MORE: Penalty demotes Red Bull driver to SIXTH on the grid at Australian GP

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Red Bull Daniel Ricciardo Bahrain Australian Grand Prix Helmut Marko Yuki Tsunoda
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