Daniel Ricciardo wants to bring an end to the war of words between Red Bull Racing and engine supplier Renault ahead of this weekend’s Malaysian Grand Prix.
Team Principal Christian Horner has been openly critical of the French engine firm, who provide the power units to the Tilbrook-based team, throughout the winter as the Mercedes-powered cars took another step forwards in performance during pre-season.
Red Bull, who completed a clean-sweep of drivers and constructors’ championships between 2010 and 2013 with Renault power, have struggled this season with Ricciardo taking fifth in the opening round in Australia, while team-mate Daniil Kvyat suffered a car failure on the way to the grid in Melbourne.
But with engine regulations even tighter this season and each driver restricted to four units for the campaign, a failure on Ricciardo’s car in the first free practice session in Australia means he is down to just three for the remaining 18 races.
Both Horner and Renault bosses have been slinging mud at each other in the week ahead of the second round in Kuala Lumpur, but Ricciardo is keen to draw a line in the sand - at least while there’s work to do out on the track.
“Red Bull is a winning team and they want results,” he said. “It’s very early to be talking about this sort of stuff after just once race, but we certainly felt we should be more competitive coming into the season.
“Some people feel like they’ve got to get things off their chest and say what they’ve got to say, but it’s a race weekend and we have to get our heads down and focus on improving.”
The first free practice session for the Malaysian Grand Prix starts at 2am (UK time) on Friday.