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Daniel Ricciardo expects some drivers to get 'found out' by new cars

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by December 23, 2016 General

Daniel Ricciardo expects Formula One’s new cars to pose a physical test next year that could expose the weaknesses of some of his rivals. 

The Australian said he would resume formal training next month in preparation for new regulations that include wider tyres and more down force. He said with cars set to be faster by up to five seconds a lap the G-force increases will be a shock to some of the younger drivers.   

Daniel Ricciardo celebrates another podium finish. Daniel Ricciardo celebrates another podium finish. Photo: Getty Images

“I think so. If they are as physical as what they were when I did my first test, you know that was real shock to the system,” Ricciardo said. “If it goes to something like that then, yeah, I think some people will take it for granted and not really appreciate what it will be and, yeah, they will get found out.

“The hot races, the hot races are the big ones. You know Malaysia, Singapore, these ones, if you are not prepared for that then I’m sure those last 15 to 20 laps are going to be the closest thing to hell that we get.”

Ricciardo, who was joined at Red Bull in 2016 by teenage sensation Max Verstappen, said he was confident he’ll be physically prepared because of his experience in previous generation cars. 

“For us as drivers we have sort of said for a while and especially the drivers who have been around a bit longer, you know, you want faster cars,” he said. “Not technically more challenging, I mean they are hard to drive, but you know physically more challenging and just a bit more scary, I guess.

“Like, corner speeds, the first time I drove an F1 in 2009 you know the corner speeds were astronomical – my head wanted to get ripped off. And I sort of feel now, the young drivers when they come in now it is less of a shock to them and I think we sort of want that again. You want F1 to be really on another level. And I guess that goes back to the wider tyres, more down force to try and help that.”

Back in Australia for a break, Ricciardo said he’d be able to enjoy his food a bit more in 2017 and not count calories as much. 

“I think from where I ended up this year weight wise, I think that two kilos on top of that should be more than OK,” he said. “But I guess it’s not really going to be two kilos of just food, it will obviously be muscle and what not to try and hold onto these cars … I should be a bit more free to train the way I want to and not train to lose weight.” 

Ricciardo’s personal trainer, Stuart Smith, is also taking time off at home in Brisbane and they’ll go to work on the new season training regime early in the new year.  

“Once January starts my trainer comes over … he is in Brisbane now with his family so he’ll come to Perth straight after the new year and we’ll get a head start here and then head off [to Europe] from here.” 

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