Ricciardo believes following cars might be easier in 2019
Daniel Ricciardo says he has been offered a glimmer of hope that Formula 1's new aero rules could make it easier for drivers to follow other cars thanks to an experience he had in testing.
F1 has revamped the front and rear wing regulations for this year as part of a raft of changes aimed at trying to boost overtaking in 2019.
One of the key aims was to better allow cars to follow each other, rather than instantly losing downforce as they approach a rival and being forced to drop back because their tyres overheat.
While a number of drivers said it was too early to gauge what difference the new rules had made, Ricciardo said he had had one positive moment when he was able to shadow another car.
"It actually seemed alright," he said. "At the time I was lapping quite a bit quicker, and I don't know what car it was, so I assumed they had more fuel.
"Maybe that is why it was easier for me to follow, but if that was a like for like it felt better.
"But I don't want to get too excited. We are still going to feel it, don't get me wrong. But I would like to think that was a sign that we would feel a bit of an improvement."
While Ricciardo was staying optimistic that there was scope for things to be better, his Renault teammate Nico Hulkenberg had no doubts that overtaking would still be hard in 2019.
"I haven't really followed any cars around, I've got a couple of tows, but my feeling is it's still going to be difficult," he said.
"The pace is just so high, especially now here, and you brake so late that braking zones are so short, that it's almost impossible it feels to do a move on someone somewhere."
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