Daniel Ricciardo has his sights set on a podium finish to cap off his stint with the Red Bull Formula 1 team at the season-ending Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

Ricciardo will start his final race with Red Bull before his switch to Renault from fifth on the grid in Abu Dhabi, having narrowly missed out on outpacing the Ferrari pair despite setting a blistering final sector – the fastest of anyone – in Q3.

The Australian ended up just 0.036s adrift of Kimi Raikkonen’s time, though he did manage to outqualify Red Bull teammate Max Verstappen. Ricciardo is confident he will be able to mix it up with the Ferrari pair in Sunday’s race as he bids to score a first podium since winning the Monaco Grand Prix in May.

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‘I put myself in their [Ferrari’s race now, so just got to try and get at least one,” Ricciardo said.

“I’ll be looking at both Ferraris on the start, try and climb my way to a podium. Race pace is good, even if we hang there we can try and undercut or something, so we’ll give it a go.”

Ricciardo reckons Verstappen, who will start alongside him on the third row on Hypersofts, could be better placed for the race due to the RB14’s strength at managing Pirelli’s softest tyres compared to Red Bull’s rivals.

The Hypersoft I’m sure the first lap there will be a grip advantage but hopefully it is not too much,” he explained.

“Hypersofts would have given us more of an advantage but the Ultrasofts is a bit more consistent, and unless we see degradation from that tyre it is probably going to be - not a predicable race - but less to do.

“For sure the first couple laps we can’t get too clever,” he added. “We just have to do our race. My objective is to try and attack the guys ahead.

“If it works out that he [Max Verstappen] is a second quicker and I’m losing pace then maybe they do something. But hopefully I’m just fast and that’s that.”

Asked if he is prepared to take more risks in order to finish on the podium, Ricciardo replied: “I’m always prepared, so I’m not going to say I’ll take more risks than I normally do.

“I have nothing to lose. But I have not had anything to lose all year, so for once we will try get a strong start, and just attack, put pressure on, and be relentless.

“Sometimes cooling down is good for the tyres. But I’m just going to try and put pressure the whole race and hope for a mistake if I’m behind one of those guys.”

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