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'Ricciardo can challenge Vettel'

Tuesday 11-February-2014 11:17

Mark Webber is confident that Daniel Ricciardo will do a better job of challenging Sebastian Vettel in the second Red Bull than he was able to of late.

During the 2013 Formula One season, Webber was able to out-qualify his illustrious team-mate on only two occasions as Vettel eased to his fourth consecutive Drivers' Championship title.

Since then, Webber has retired from the sport in order to take up a position with Porsche's Le Mans team, but the 37-year-old thinks his countryman has the ability to challenge Vettel this year.

"He'll go well. I think he'll give Seb a real hard time in qualifying - it'll be 50:50 in the first year, I reckon," Webber told the latest issue of Motor Sport magazine.

Webber added that Vettel's supremacy was largely due to his excellence in the slower corners, because of the 'blown floor' design chief designer Adrian used under the previous set of F1 rules.

"I took a few off Seb last year - and the blown floor is gone now," Webber added.

"I think Daniel will be fine, and it certainly won't hurt him that he's come through the Red Bull system. I just hope he gets better starts than I did!"

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