Daniel Ricciardo believes his tire test outing driving a 2011 Red Bull at Barcelona last week will help him integrate with his new team next year.
Although the Australian was able to do little running because of rain during the test, which was run by Pirelli as part of its preparations for 2014, he was able to gain more experience of working with Red Bull.
“In terms of behind the wheel, there was not so much I could learn, but I could work a bit more with the team,” said Ricciardo. “In starting a relationship, every bit counts. The preparation for next year is coming together piece by piece.”
Ricciardo completed fewer than 30 laps and did not drive on the other day of the test, which was given to Red Bull reserve driver Sebastien Buemi. The bulk of his mileage was done on wet rubber.
“It was raining all day,” said Ricciardo. “I did four laps in the dry and about 20 in the wet. I got to try a new-specification extreme tire potentially for next year, which seemed to be quite good, and that’s all.”
Ricciardo added that while the pressure of having to prove himself to Red Bull is off now he has been awarded the race seat alongside Sebastian Vettel for 2014, he is still pushing himself to perform.
“The pressure is not really off,” said Ricciardo. “It’s off for me knowing I’ve got something locked in for next year and that’s nice, but they [Red Bull] don’t want to see me at the rear of the grid either, so there is always the pressure.
“Mainly it’s just on me to perform and get what I feel I can out of the car. Monza was good, to go and get a result like that [seventh] after the dust had settled.”