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As the Formula 1 series heads to Spain this weekend, most of the talk has been about the battle between Lewis Hamilton and teammate Nico Rosberg. It’s understandable as the two are locked into a two-man fight for the lead in the driver’s championship but there are two other drivers that could be experiencing a little friction.

Red Bull’s Sebastian Vettel’s comment, while leading in China, regarding his trailing teammate was taken as a snub to team orders to let Daniel Ricciardo by. Vettel simply replied, “tough luck”. Later, the German complied without any drama.

The team once touted their virtuous nature suggesting that team orders were an anathema and blight on F1 but now they have a different approach with these heady days of rampant team orders. To those ends, Ricciardo told Reuters that drivers need to respect them too:

“We throw up different scenarios and discuss it, discuss it between drivers and between principals and engineers,” Ricciardo told The West Australian newspaper.

“It is our responsibility to obey it, unless it’s completely out of order and then we can obviously try and put up a fight and give our reasons.

“But the team are doing all the calculations on pit wall during the race and you have to respect what they’re saying.

“It’s not always nice if you are being told to move over. It’s not nice being that slower car, it’s frustrating.”

Well sure they do because Daniel is currently outperforming his 4-time championship winning teammate Vettel. To be perfectly honest, having met Daniel, I do believe he would be the first guy to move over if the fortunes were reversed. He’s that kind of guy.

Ricciardo feels that team orders should be obeyed but with last year’s “Multi 21” incident, chances are Vettel may not feel quite the same.

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An F1 fan since 1972, NC has spent over 25 years in the technology industry and as a CTO, he focuses on technology integration in commercial workspace design, AV systems integration, digital media strategies, technology planning, consulting, speaking, presenting, sales, content strategy, marketing and brand building.
  • Rapierman

    Evidently, egos play a part in this situation. Vettel has the ego that made him a world champioin (which you obviously have to have, to a certain degree). However, there are times when ego’s must be put aside for the good of the team (much as I hate the fact that racing is a team sport in Formula 1). Vettel just isn’t up to the task. Ricciardo, however, is. Yes, he’ll give way, but he doesn’t need to since he’s clearly beating Vettel by a few seconds. It may get to the point where (pardon the pro show-wrestling language), Vettel turns “heel” while Ricciardo becomes “baby face” and it gets to the point where the German world champion gets shoved aside in favor of the popular future star from Down Under.

    …and that’s when the tensions within the team begin to build.

  • UAN

    I like Ricciardo – honey badger for sure. Good racer too!

  • Schmorbraten

    Love that one, but the biggest team mate clash is still some months away. After Mercedes secure the constructors’ crown and when Hamilton and Rosberg are the only ones left for the WDC, there won’t be any reasons left to impose team orders, and they can let rip.

  • Of all the teams, if Kimi actually does come good, that will be the biggest problem to have in a team. Neither one would take it in stride of they were told to yield. Does anyone buy into the conspiracy that letting Daniel through now will make it easier when RB has to tell him to be the one to cede position? Maybe we will find out in Spain with Vettel’s new chassis.

  • The “Smiling Assassin”… ;)

  • I think that Merc have it right, let them fight.

    Watching “senna” last night with the wife, (she’s not a F1 fan really) she asked surely the team mates should be helping each other, not fighting each other (prost and senna) and she made a good point, if your not working as a team, why not only run 1 car?