AUSSIE F1 driver Daniel Ricciardo finished fourth on the first day of pre-season testing in Jerez, which saw former Red Bull teammate Sebastian Vettel set the pace at Ferrari.
The four-time world champion finished ahead of Sauber's Marcus Ericsson and Nico Rosberg, who completed a trouble-free 157 laps to suggest Mercedes would again be the team to beat in 2015, which begins with the Australian Grand Prix in Melbourne on March 15.
Despite the promising start by Ricciardo, Red Bull chief technical officer Adrian Newey has already admitted he didn't think his team could beat Rosberg and Mercedes teammate Lewis Hamilton this season.
Ricciardo (pictured) wasn't quite as pessimistic.
"The first impressions are good," he said.
"We'll get a few more laps over the next few days, but so far everything seems pretty encouraging."
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