Red Bull Gets Lucky in Barcelona

Formula One Team Red Bull Daniel Ricciardo has lucked out in his placement within the top three, but their victory might not be all it’s cracked up to be.

Red Bull got incredibly lucky in Barcelona. The outfit has torn back into the top three during the Barcelona Grand Prix with Daniel Ricciardo stealing the third-place podium. After Ricciardo’s teammate Max Verstappen was hit with a DNF early in the race, the pressure of victory weighed solely on Ricciardo.

The pressure has done the Aussie well as his podium placement echoes that of Verstappen’s charge to third during the Chinese Grand Prix. Although credit cannot be given to solely to Ricciardo. Were it not for the first-lap disaster that picked up Max Verstappen and Kimi Raikkonen – and later the elimination of Valtteri Bottas with an engine issue – Ricciardo would had a much tougher fight to third.

Daniel Ricciardo has secured his first podium of 2017, but he's under no illusion of the circumstances that brought him to it.
Daniel Ricciardo has secured his first podium of 2017, but he’s under no illusion of the circumstances that brought him to it.

Although the brake problems that beleaguered Ricciardo in the past were nowhere to be found, and the Aussie breathed a sigh of relief as he watched the disaster that took out many of his compatriots clear him without issue, Ricciardo knows that his fortunes in Barcelona have rested more on the luck of the draw rather than that of pure finesse and driving talent. Even though the future holds uncertainty for Ricciardo and Red Bull, that won’t stop them from enjoying the turnout out of the day:

“We got, I guess a bit lucky, not sure what the problem was with Valtteri, looked like he just stopped on the side of the track, I guess something with engine failure or whatever but yeah, it’s nice to be up here nonetheless.

As for my race, yeah, not any exciting stories besides watching a bit happen in front of me at the start. Otherwise, just trying to manage it.

At the end, I felt I was trying to get the most out of it, pushing but I heard the lap times they were doing at the end, and we’ve still got a bit to go but we’ll keep working at it, try and stay positive and keep everyone motivated.” – Daniel Ricciardo

As both Red Bull drivers vie for dominance within their team, they may find themselves onset by Force India sooner than they realize.
As both Red Bull drivers vie for dominance within their team, they may find themselves onset by Force India sooner than they realize.

Ricciardo holds a fifth-place position in the driver standings for the 2017 season with 37 points – just a two point lead over his teammate Max Verstappen. While the two are eagerly looking toward the pack frontrunners of Mercedes and Ferrari, the true threat may still come from behind them.

As of now, Force India has emerged as the dominant in the midfield, and they have proven that they are not content to rest on their laurels. The significantly-less funded team has been using all of its resources to capitalize on its current capabilities – and if they continue to tap into their current development path, Red Bull may be in for a rude awakening.

MONTMELO, SPAIN - MAY 14:  Daniel Ricciardo of Australia and Red Bull Racing on the grid during the Spanish Formula One Grand Prix at Circuit de Catalunya on May 14, 2017 in Montmelo, Spain.  (Photo by Dan Istitene/Getty Images)
MONTMELO, SPAIN – MAY 14: Daniel Ricciardo of Australia and Red Bull Racing on the grid during the Spanish Formula One Grand Prix at Circuit de Catalunya on May 14, 2017 in Montmelo, Spain. (Photo by Dan Istitene/Getty Images)

If Red Bull can’t reach the dizzying heights of the top two (Ricciardo crossed the line 72-seconds after Hamilton), then a battle between the Bulls and the Force would benefit the show, and give Red Bull a bit of company on-track. The running order is currently denying us Max Verstappen and Daniel Ricciardo as race drivers. We want to see their race craft exposed in a direct fight with Checo and Ocon, it would be very good for Formula 1.

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