Sebastian Vettel’s victory in Malaysia has made Fernando Alonso’s decision to leave Ferrari look bad, says fellow F1 driver Daniel Ricciardo. The unlucky Spaniard could only watch as Ferrari victory celebration.
Joining a new team is as much luck as good judgment: Hamilton’s decision to quit McLaren for Mercedes delivered a second world title. But it was the swap at Ferrari that has startled F1.
Sebastian Vettel, the four-time world champion, went without a win for the whole of 2014 season and dumped Red Bull for the Scuderia. The double time world champion left Ferrari at the end of last season – before the end of his contract – in order to chase a title with McLaren-Honda.
Asked for his thoughts about the Spaniard’s move, Ricciardo said, “I think the move – with Seb [Vettel] winning [for Ferrari] on the weekend – doesn’t look as nice.” Following the German scored Ferrari’s first victory since 2013.
“But obviously at the time, I think he’d spent five years from what I understand with Ferrari, I think he felt like he did all he could to win a title and that didn’t come,” he said in an interview with Laureus.com.
“So McLaren came in this season with a new, let’s say, chapter in their career and trying to make something happen – and he obviously saw an opportunity in that.
“Obviously they’re not up to speed yet but I’m sure he’ll get there – probably a bit like us. It’s a matter of time, but I’m sure we’ll fight for a podium.”
“I think he’s the kind of guy that wouldn’t do it just to make up the numbers. I think he wants to do it for only one reason, and that’s to win.”
Ricciardo believed Ferrari’s win would’ve woken a few people up at Mercedes, who dominated last season to win the championship via Lewis Hamilton.
“I think they definitely made a bit of a statement on the weekend, for the fans and everyone, it’s great. he added.
“Obviously from my side, I want to be part of that fight, so that’s where we’ll try and close the gap and make it a three-way fight.”