Daniel Ricciardo: Red Bull driver cools talk of title challenge

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Ricciardo wins as Mercedes collide

Red Bull's Daniel Ricciardo is playing down his chances of becoming Formula 1 world champion this season.

The Australian is 64 points adrift of leader Nico Rosberg and 35 behind Lewis Hamilton with seven races remaining.

Asked if he felt he was in the title race now, he replied: "If I'm within 50 points coming into Abu Dhabi, then yes, but there's still a few races to go."

Abu Dhabi, the last race of 2014, has double points on offer, 50 for first, 36 for second, down to two for 10th.

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Rosberg clips Hamilton in Belgian GP

"While it's still mathematically possible, we'll keep fighting," said Ricciardo, who is in his first season at Red Bull.

He currently lies third in the standings, 60 points ahead of team-mate and four-time champion Sebastian Vettel, with seven races remaining and a maximum of 200 points on offer.

"It is remarkable Daniel has won only one less race than Rosberg this year," said Red Bull team boss Christian Horner.

"He is doing a phenomenal job at the moment and deserved his victory.

"Everything we see of him is incredibly calm, in control and he is obviously marking himself out as a clear championship contender."

Ricciardo's win in Spa was his third victory of the season and came after Mercedes team-mates Hamilton and Rosberg clashed on lap two to effectively end each other's chances of success.

"To come and steal some points on a circuit where we weren't supposed to is nice, but I think what's important is to capitalise on the circuits that we should be strong on," said the former Toro Rosso driver, 25.

"If we can take maximum points at a couple of those, then it's never over.

"We're really motivated right now. At the same time, we'll stay grounded."

The next race is the Italian Grand Prix at Monza on 7 September.

Ricciardo celebrates his third win of the 2014 season
Ricciardo celebrates his third win of the 2014 season

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