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Formula One

Ricciardo steps closer to Red Bull future

It could be an Australian for Australian switch at Red Bull with Daniel Ricciardo set to test for team at Silverstone.

Last Modified: 16 Jul 2013 10:56
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Ricciardo (L) is one of the drivers in the running to partner Sebastian Vettel at Red Bull next season [GALLO/GETTY]

Daniel Ricciardo's hopes of replacing fellow-Australian Mark Webber at Red Bull were given a boost on Tuesday when the Formula One champions announced he would test for them at Silverstone this week.

Red Bull said the Toro Rosso driver, who is facing competition from Lotus's Kimi Raikkonen to partner triple world champion Sebastian Vettel in 2014, would be in their car on Wednesday afternoon.

Webber, who has announced his departure at the end of the season for Le Mans sportscar racing with Porsche, will test the Pirelli tyres on Thursday afternoon and Vettel will be in the car on Friday.

Highly-rated Portuguese Antonio Filix da Costa, a member of the Red Bull young driver programme who would be likely to replace Ricciardo at Toro Rosso, will test in the morning on Wednesday and Thursday.

The Silverstone test was originally intended to be for young drivers but was opened up to regular race drivers to test for Pirelli after a spate of blowouts at the circuit during last month's British Grand Prix.

Minnows make change 

Without a point since their debut in 2010 as Virgin Racing, Marussia look to the future after agreeing a long-term technical partnership with Ferrari to use their engines and full powertrain from 2014, the Anglo-Russian Formula One team said.

The move had been widely expected, with Marussia's existing supplier Cosworth set to leave the sport and the team appointing Frenchman Jules Bianchi - a Ferrari reserve - to their race line-up at the start of this year.

Marussia said in a statement that the deal provided further confirmation of the team's commitment to Formula One and "determination to maintain our progression towards our long-term ambitions".

The British-based team operate with the smallest budget in the sport, however, they are currently ahead of Malaysian-owned rivals Caterham after nine races.

The Formula One regulations are changing significantly next year with a new turbo-charged 1.6 litre V6 engine and energy recovery systems being introduced to replace the current 2.4 litre V8.

Mercedes and Renault are expected to power four teams each with Ferrari, the most successful and oldest team in the championship, supplying the remaining three.

"We look forward to working with Scuderia Ferrari during this exciting new era of Formula One competition," said Marussia chief executive Andy Webb.

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Source:
Reuters
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