Ricciardo has realistic aims in 2016

Daniel Ricciardo in Abu Dhabi, 2014.
Daniel Ricciardo in Abu Dhabi, 2014.

Daniel Ricciardo doesn’t expect Red Bull Racing to be challenging for the F1 title in 2016 as the final race of the season looms.

The Australian, who won three races in 2014 on his way to third in the driver’s championship, has stood on the podium just twice this season and currently lies eighth behind team-mate Daniil Kvyat.

Red Bull have struggled to make inroads and are at loggerheads with engine supplier Renault over their lacklustre performances, and with no announcement yet as to who will power the cars next year, Ricciardo isn’t expecting a title fight in 2016.

“I’ll know a bit more when we decide, or know what’s going to be in the back of the car,” he said.

“Right now, where we stand, it would be hard for us to say we’re going to challenge for a title. But at the same time, I like to think that next year we can get more than two podiums – let’s say that!”

The 2015 season comes to an end this Sunday at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. Red Bull have picked up three wins since the first race at the Yas Marina Circuit in 2009, with Sebastian Vettel winning on all three occasions - 2009, 10 and 13.

The team from Tilbrook have already secured fourth place in the constructor’s championship, but Ricciardo and Kvyat are separated by 10 points in the battle for seventh.