Vettel pleased for Ricciardo after “horrible winter”

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Sebastian Vettel may not have won today’s Canadian Grand Prix, but he was quick to heap praise on teammate Daniel Ricciardo who claimed his maiden grand prix victory and Red Bull’s first in 2014.

Vettel eventually crossed the line in third place, with his chances of winning the race being lost due to his strategy that caused him to continually run in dirty air. However, Ricciardo managed to pounce upon Mercedes’ reliability problems and pass leader Nico Rosberg with just a few laps remaining.

“Congratulations to Daniel for his first win, which is very, very special, so I’m happy for him and happy for the team, especially after such a horrible winter,” Vettel said after the race, reflecting on Red Bull’s pre-season problems. “It’s nice to be able to finally break through to get a win this year and capitalise on Mercedes having a problem.”

However, the German driver did question the team’s strategy today, believing that a more risky call would have paid dividends and perhaps allowed him to claim his first win of the season.

“I think we could have taken more risk with the strategy today,” Vettel said. “But it’s hard to know exactly what was going on around me when I’m not sitting on the pit wall.

“We have developed the car a lot this year, so we are going in the right direction, but we need to develop it even more for the straights, so there is still a lot of work ahead of us. We are here to keep pushing and to keep doing our best.”

The German driver has moved back up into fifth place in the drivers’ championship, but trails Ricciardo by 19 points after seven races in 2014. His title hopes may have been over for some time now, but beating his teammate across the course of the season will be crucial for Vettel given his prowess as a four-time champion of the world.