While Christian Horner has been defending one of his driver's performance in Spa, the Red Bull team principal has laid credit on Daniel Ricciardo's effort to manage the race to take second place and further fortify its position against Ferrari.

Having wrestled the second spot in the F1 manufacturers' championship from Ferrari in Germany, Red Bull edged further ahead to 22 points in front of the Italian manufacturer thanks to Ricciardo's second place in the Belgian Grand Prix.

Despite a slightly underwhelming qualifying by taking fifth on the grid, the Australian driver steered clear of the turn one clash ahead of him and managed the performance deficit to those around him by fending over Nico Hulkenberg before Lewis Hamilton closed in on his charge from the back of the grid.

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"I think Daniel drove a superb race today, I think his tyre management and his pace, his judgment was excellent," Horner said. "At this type of venue to come away with a front row start with Max yesterday and P2 after the restart, obviously Lewis was only a car or two behind, so there was still pressure with the Mercedes to deal with.

"Unfortunately Nico Rosberg just had a bit too much pace in hand today, but it was a great performance by Daniel."

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Ricciardo also gave his position in the F1 drivers' championship a boost by moving clear of Sebastian Vettel by 23 points in the battle for the best of the rest behind the dominant Mercedes duo.