Ricciardo: I had faith about 2012 seat

Date published: December 16 2011

Daniel Ricciardo feels he did a “good enough job” in 2011 to secure a seat for next year, but concedes he was slightly concerned about his future…

Daniel Ricciardo believes he did a “good enough job” in 2011 to secure a race seat for next year, but concedes he was slightly concerned about his future.

The 22-year-old Ricciardo and Frenchman Jean-Eric Vergne were unveiled as Toro Rosso’s 2012 driver pairing on Wednesday. The duo replaces Sebastien Buemi and Jaime Alguersuari.

“Until something is done you are always going to be a little bit concerned, but I know everyone at Red Bull is looking after my interests and I felt I had done a good enough job this year for them to try and find me a seat for 2012. I had faith something would come through,” he said.

The Australian gained valuable F1 experience this year as he took part in 11 grands prix for HRT.

“Looking back at the whole year, I did more travelling than ever before in my life and I found out it can be really tiring and can take it out of you,” he said.

“So I learned how important it is to be on time and to manage my time as efficiently as possible and to rest when I can.

“There was so much to take in this year and from the driving point of view, as a reserve driver you can see everything the job involves, but until you are actually racing, you do not realise the demands it puts on you, so that was another important lesson.

“I learned to get my priorities right and not waste my energy elsewhere.”

Ricciardo and his Vergne were both part of the Red Bull Junior driver programme and the Australian expects the rivalry to be healthy next season.

“We had a pretty good relationship by the standard of racing driver team-mates,” he said.

“As we progressed, the rivalry got stronger between us, but the important thing is that we respect one another. We both want to beat each other more than anyone else and it’s been like that since we first raced together.

“It’s a good thing and means we will get the maximum out of the equipment we are given. Next year will be a proper test for both of us.”