Red Bull Racing’s Daniel Ricciardo says he’s looking forward to next year’s Formula 1 season, as the Australian is happy with the progress the team is making behind closed doors in preparation for 2017.

Next year’s shake-up of regulations will see an overhaul of the aerodynamics of a Formula 1 car, an aspect that has been a strength of Red Bull’s for many years and should suit the RB12’s successor as the team is currently making their way back to the sharp end of the grid.

“Let’s say I’m happy to be here,” Ricciardo said on Thursday in Belgium.

“I don’t have any doubts that I’m in the wrong place, so I’m pretty happy looking towards 2017, it’s hard to know what Ferrari is going to do, I know what’s happening in our factory and I like what I’m seeing.

“I’m sleeping well at night, obviously looking forward to the rest of the season, but quietly excited about 2017.”

While all of the teams have started preparing their car for next year – some even shifting more focus than others – Red Bull still have a tough fight on their hands having just leapfrogged Ferrari into second in the constructors’ championship last race in Germany.

When asked if Red Bull had to fend Ferrari off in the next two races for the best chance to finish second in the constructors’ championship, Ricciardo said that Red Bull will be quite close to Ferrari in Spa, although will be the underdogs next week in Monza.

“If we could beat them at Monza for example then that would be quite a good one for us. Then coming to Singapore, Suzuka, on paper then those should favour us more. But we are talking about it but I am not thinking about it too much, I am not looking that far ahead.

“We will take races as they come, and if we get the most out of our car we can get ahead of them. But I am not going to count them out, Seb [Vettel] as well. Seb can turn it on pretty well, and Kimi [Raikkonen] on his day as well. We are prepared to hopefully be in a fight with Mercedes, but also prepared that Ferrari might join in on the action as well.”

Red Bull is currently 14 points ahead of Ferrari in the constructors’ championship after the Austrian team achieved a double podium last race in Germany.

Image via Red Bull Content Pool

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Josh Kruse

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