SHANGHAI, China - Daniel Ricciardo has admitted that Red Bull's problems in Formula 1 run deeper than merely Renault power.
Particularly after Australia, bosses of the former dominant team pointed a finger angrily at its French engine partner.
Renault hit back with equal venom, accusing Red Bull of pedalling lies about its only issue in 2015 being the struggling turbo V6.
NEED TO IMPROVE
Asked directly if it was correct to say the engine was the only problem, senior Red Bull driver Ricciardo admitted: "It's the whole package but that means we now have to look for many areas for improvement."
Ricciardo is a distant eighth in the 2015 Drivers' standings after two races, despite finishing the 2015 season "best of the rest" behind the two Mercedes drivers.
"Put it this way," he said. "it's been challenging. The season is still young and many things can change. We will just have to have some patience."
Ricciardo admitted that it was difficult to cope two weeks earlier when a driver he notably defeated in 2015 - former team mate Sebastian Vettel - lapped him en route to victory in a Ferrari.
EVERYONE WAS 'SURPRISED'
Ricciardo said: "I was surprised. We saw in winter testing that Ferrari looked good but to beat Mercedes in the second race of the season... I think everybody was surprised.
"On the other hand, it's good for our sport that another car is at the front - good for Ferrari obviously but also for everybody else.
"It shows that Mercedes is not unbeatable."