Daniel Ricciardo has played down the complaints of Red Bull counterparts Max Verstappen and Daniil Kvyat about the kerbs around the Red Bull Ring, saying drivers need to give them respect or be punished as they would at a street circuit.
Verstappen, Kvyat, Nico Rosberg and Sergio Perez have each suffered rear suspension failures over the course of the weekend, seemingly as a result of the harsher kerbs installed for the 2016 Austrian Grand Prix to deter drivers from taking advantage of the Red Bull Ring's extensive run-offs.
With Kvyat's high-speed off at turn eight causing particular alarm, several drivers, including pole sitter Lewis Hamilton, have now called for a re-think ahead of the race.
However, Ricciardo admits he has little sympathy for those that are caught out by the kerbs, saying that it is up to the driver to approach them as they would a wall at a street venue and not test the limit.
“I am honestly treating it like a wall,” he said. “I know that if I hit it I am likely to have a damaged car. It is not like a bullying scenario, I am not laughing at them, at Danny or anyone that crashed, not at all. But for me I like that it is actually black and white.
“So many modern circuits, us drivers complain that you can run off and not pay a price, so this weekend we are paying a price. Sure the damage to the cars is quite severe, but it is the same if you hit a wall at a street circuit. In Baku I tore apart all the rear of my car.”
Meanwhile, Ricciardo will start Red Bull's home race from fifth position after an indifferent qualifying performance was boosted by penalties for those ahead. Nevertheless, he has high hopes for the race after ensuring he will start on the super-soft rubber.
“We just didn't give ourselves enough time on the slick to really get the most out of it. That was the situation. The car was pretty good. We had the potential to be up there. Just a bit of wrong timing.
“The positive is that we start fifth with the penalties, and on the super softs, so if we didn't do that well in Q3 with some decisions, we did the right decision in Q2 to go on the super softs. Tomorrow it will help us.”