How much difference does it make to your psyche when you get in a car knowing that you've got a chance of winning?

Quite a bit more. It's a lot easier to get motivated and, yeah, it changes a lot. I mean I'd like to say and I'd like to think I'm pretty sure it doesn't change you know obviously Toro Rosso last year, I knew we couldn't really win.

And in a terrible way it must have been a big step up from an HRT...

Yes and that as well so it's not that I came into the car driving 95%, you know, I think you always drive at your maximum but, there is something more when you know you have a chance to win or step on the podium, you know it's just easier to be hungry for it and get motivated. So even if you're feeling a bit tired it's just easier to not feel tired.

If you looked ahead 12 months ago and you're looking ahead to coming in to this team and you look at where you are now and what you've done, now that Seb [Vettel] is leaving and you're going to be leading it and won three races, could you have imagined it going this well?

Not really. I mean I hoped I would get on the podium and give Seb, you know a bit of a run for his money but I didn't really expect to have the only three wins and 10 podiums or whatever it's been. Yeah it's been cool.

From Ferrari, is it grazie mille to you because you sent Seb to them?

They gave me a signing bonus! I got Seb's signing bonus! Yep. [Laughs]
Do you feel a little bit guilty that Sebastian is leaving that it may be you are one of the reasons for that?

I don't feel guilty. I think it's probably just made the situation more clear for Seb in terms of ... obviously he didn't have the year he would have liked to have had and it's probably just put everything into perspective you know, he's won four titles at Red Bull. To win a fifth at Red Bull is that going to be as satisfying as maybe winning one with another team? And you know I know he's pretty passionate about Ferrari and even their road cars. I know he's a fan of the company, of the product, so I think it probably wasn't a hard decision in the end, you know from his point of view.

You seem to get more out of the car than Seb this year, when that was the case with Mark [Webber], the car was always changed to the way that Seb wanted it. What's the secret that they haven't so much done that this year, it's as if right from the start you had credibility within the team?

I mean to be honest I can't speak for Mark. I don't really know how much was, you know, maybe the media blowing it out of proportion, or how much was sometimes maybe his frustration. So I don't really know in terms of what to believe or I don't really know what the situation was. I know that in August or September last year, when I let's say signed for Red Bull Racing they told me that it will be 100% equality, you know, equal treatment and that was their word, and obviously I believed that and that's all I needed to hear and that's all it's been this year. So for me I haven't experienced anything else so for me it's been as it should be.

So was it an advantage for you coming to Red Bull this year feeling in the way like, "Oh I'm the new kid on the block now, I have nothing to lose only to win"?

I think so I mean definitely the way I looked at it was you know if anything there was more pressure on Seb than on me because if the car was expected to win, you know, if we were expected to go to Melbourne with the quickest car then no-one was expecting me to win it was, okay Seb should be the winner and maybe Daniel might get a podium or might get a top five. So with that it was easy for me to just come in, do my thing and I think that was the best approach. So yes it all worked out really well.

Next year you'll have a new kid on block so is your pressure higher then?

Hmm, I don't think so I mean I think now I've reached pressure. I mean you have pressure and then it's all ... pressure's what you make of it. I think I've been in high pressure situations and I can't really imagine more now, so yes. I think obviously with Danny [Kvyat] it's a new challenge and yes I'm a bit in Seb's position, you know, people will probably expect me to be the quicker guy than Danny but obviously that's up to me to make sure I am.

Are you surprised that until Brazil Nico [Rosberg] in the best car had four wins and you had three, I mean that's extraordinary isn't it?

That statistic was pretty cool, I was proud of that.

But you're hoping he didn't win.

So yeah ... but yeah I mean looking back on the season I think to have ... if we could replay this whole season and have Mercedes as dominant as they've been I would have taken one win, you know, I would have been like "Wow, if we can beat these guys once that will just be awesome". So to do it three times it's, yes ... It was a fun season, I was very, very happy with the way we maximised every opportunity. There wasn't four wins there, you know, it was only ever three and we got all three of them so, that's what I'm really proud of.

Which is the most satisfying win out of the three?

In terms of like 'argh' it was Budapest. I think because Canada part shock part the accident. You know when I crossed the line I was like yes but then I saw the accident so I was like, "Do I celebrate, what do I do?", so I was a bit reserved still and with Budapest it was like, yes, so there was some Canada and then some Budapest all...

And the way you did it I guess...

Yes and the way I did it, I mean passing Lewis [Hamilton] and Fernando [Alonso] in one lap, you know, obviously I had better tyres but it was a cool feeling. Yeah that was nice.

A lot of drivers on the podium or in a press conference, they never let you see their emotions, it's like a poker game. Whereas with you there's never really much question what you're thinking. Is that because you've managed to find this way of kind of being in the moment?

Yeah definitely, I tend to not look too far ahead and just appreciate and be grateful for the things I've got now or got going for me now. Yes I mean I do get upset, I mean, yes. For example Monaco, I think Monaco I was a little bit grump after qualifying, I remember it was, I wasn't smiling in the press photo because I thought I'd left something on the table. If I don't perform to let's say what I feel I'm capable of then I am upset but generally speaking, you know, I have a great job, live a pretty good life so...

It's not horrible is it?

It's not horrible, no. No definitely not and when you see people you know maybe, whether it's Formula One or other sports people or people in a good position in a way take it for granted it's not nice to see and even you've got to think about younger kids you know, they don't want their hero looking like it so...