Formula 1

Red Bull to announce Ricciardo as Webber replacement - report

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Daniel Ricciardo is set to be announced as Sebastian Vettel's new team-mate at Red Bull next season at next week's Belgian Grand Prix according to a report.

Germany's Sport Bild reports the 23-year-old has been chosen to replace fellow Australian Mark Webber as speculation Kimi Raikkonen could rejoin Ferrari gathers pace.

"Unfortunately, I cannot say any more than that we will make an announcement at Spa," said the energy drink-owned outfit's Dr Helmut Marko.

Ricciardo spoke with Sport Bild as F1's summer break began and said he expected to have a good relationship with Vettel as the pair have worked together before.

"I know Seb quite well," he said. "As I was the reserve driver in 2010. I was out for dinner with him a few times and we get on really well."

Ricciardo's arrival at Red Bull would mark the first time the Milton Keynes based team had two drivers that came through the highly respected young driver program, though Ricciardo does admit he may not get the same equal status with Vettel at least in the first few races.

"Of course not at the start of the season," he said, "but I'm in Formula One to be the best."

Should the report be confirmed it would clear the way for young Portuguese Antonio Felix da Costa to make his debut in F1 for 2014 partnering Jean-Eric Vergne at Toro Rosso.

Only a day earlier former triple world champion Niki Lauda suggested Red Bull could "take a risk" with Ricciardo believing the Aussie provides a better long-term option than Raikkonen.

"With probably four world championships in Vettel, Red Bull has the luxury to weigh in peace the benefits of Raikkonen or Ricciardo," Lauda told the German magazine Auto Sport und Motor.

"One is the better solution in the short term, the other in the long term. In the end they can take a risk. But not Ferrari."

Indeed Lauda claims it would be common sense for Ferrari to try and bring Raikkonen back to Maranello as the marque Italian team have not won a title since Kimi's triumph in 2007.

"If Raikkonen doesn't go to Red Bull, then Ferrari should try to get him on board," he said. "For a counterweight to Alonso.

"After six years without a title, Ferrari is under great pressure," added Lauda.

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This article has been written by a member of the GiveMeSport Writing Academy and does not represent the views of GiveMeSport.com or SportsNewMedia. The views and opinions expressed are solely that of the author credited at the top of this article. GiveMeSport.com and SportsNewMedia do not take any responsibility for the content of its contributors.

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