Vettel won't be my closest mate - Ricciardo

Monday 10th March 2014, 17:20 by TF1T Staff 

Red Bull Racing, Getty Images

Daniel Ricciardo is hoping to enjoy a better off-track relationship with Sebastian Vettel than the German did with his former team-mate Mark Webber, but he warned they won't be best buddies.

Webber and Vettel clashed both on and off the circuit numerous times which, in part, led to the Australian retiring from Formula 1 a year earlier than he had previously planned.

Vettel's new team-mate is hoping for a more harmonious atmosphere, but he says it's unlikely they'll be close friends because of their competitive nature.

"A lot of people are probably waiting for the day that we have an incident on track and get into a fist-fight or something," Ricciardo told AAP. "But at the moment all I can say is there's no issues.

"I respect him as a competitor. Naturally, if I am competitive, I'm sure we're not going to be the closest mates because he's not going to like that and I'm not going to like getting my arse kicked if he's going to be doing that.

"We'll see. I don't expect it to get out of hand. It'll just be competitive and professional."

Whilst the pair might be fighting one another, it's unclear whether that'll be at the front of the grid following a difficult pre-season for the Milton Keynes squad.

Ricciardo is eager to start racing and see where they stack up against the competition.

"Testing can be a bit boring, so I'm just happy to go racing," he added. "The sooner it starts the better, and then we know as well where we stand.

"All the hype and everything will start to die down once people see what's happening. I've got to make sure the race is my biggest focus and not get sidetracked."

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