Experience coupled with bold speed has put Daniel Ricciardo at the top of his game, says Red Bull Racing's boss Christian Horner.
The Australian driver collected his sixth F1 career win in Shanghai yesterday, making the most of his team's opportunistic strategy call and his own incisive driving.
As he raced back into contention in the championship following a disappointing retirement in Bahrain over a week ago, Ricciardo pulled out all the stops on Sunday, executing a series of signature overtaking moves on his rivals during his spectacular charge in the latter part of the race.
Horner was once again left impressed with the Honey Badger's grit and skills.
"He’s a very rounded driver now,” Horner said.
"He’s absolutely at the top of his game and I think he has been for the last couple of years. He’s hit that balance of experience and pace.
"He’s one of the best overtakers in the business and his judgement is impeccable in terms of judging a gap, getting the car stopped and getting it rotated.
"Daniel has been clinical in the way that he’s executed that race in the passing moves. There was one move on Lewis [Hamilton] at Turn 14, he came from so far back. He just got the job done."
Ricciardo has yet to decide his fate for 2019, and the 28-year-old has vowed to wait a few races before weighing his options for next season.
Horner hopes Sunday's win will entice the Aussie to remain with the Red Bull family.
"Look at Kimi's race. You know, I didn’t understand that strategy," said Horner, referring to Ferrari, a team rumored to be pursuing Ricciardo for 2019.
"I think Daniel’s happy in this environment. If we can provide a car like we did today why would he want to be anywhere else?"