Ricciardo: Rivalry with Verstappen well handled by Red Bull

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Daniel Ricciardo believes that as long as mutual respect prevails out on the race track between himself and Max Verstappen, Red Bull should have no problems handling the rivalry.

Verstappen's rise to prominence this season, on the back of his switch to Red Bull from Toro Rosso and his subsequent maiden Grand Prix win in Spain, has forced Daniel Ricciardo to raise his own game to keep the young prodigy at bay.

But with the 19-year-old still gaining momentum, many believe it's only a matter of time before the harmonious Ricciardo/Verstappen pair blows up and Red Bull have a crisis on their hands.

"So far Red Bull have done it really well, I think," Ricciardo told Motorsport.com.

"If we qualify alongside each other then they say, 'Just be careful at the first corner, don't ruin each other's races,' but beyond that we're allowed to race, and fight hard and battle – but not make contact.

"Beyond that, we can defend and attack like we're with any other competitor…but just with that extra percentage of respect knowing that if we damage each other, then we're letting down six- or seven-hundred people who work for the team."

Barring a major mishap, Ricciardo sees no reason for Red Bull to change its adjusted approach.

"I think Red Bull have the balance good. I was definitely never afraid to battle with Max; the team never had to say, 'Look guys, you can't do this, you can't do that.'

"So I think that's been the right approach and they should keep doing that."

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