An outstanding long run on soft rubber during second free practice (which proved competitive with championship leader Nico Rosberg), has given Red Bull hopes of mounting an attack on Mercedes if practice times are to be believed.
As proved during his extended runs at China last year whilst still at Toro Rosso, Daniel Ricciardo’s race simulation times indicated that the Milton Keynes squad could at least aim for a top two spot on strategy, if not outright speed.
“The team said we did alright on the long run, and we got the most laps out of the option compared to the others from what I understand,” said Daniel.
“That is positive. But we will see. It is only positive if you can do one less stop in the race, so let’s see.”
McLaren’s Jenson Button was equally confident of the Australian’s potential on Sunday, pointing out that “Ricciardo in the Red Bull looks very strong.”
“He’s a lot quicker than his team-mate (Vettel) and also able to do seven more laps on the long run. The car is obviously working reasonably well in his hands so it’s going to be a bit of a mix up I think.”
Image courtesy Red Bull Racing