Jan.12 (GMM/Inautonews.com) Daniel Ricciardo has expressed confidence Red Bull can close the gap on dominant 2014 title winners Mercedes this year.

Given Mercedes’ level of dominance last season and the restraints of the engine development freeze, many believe the German team will be hard to challenge even in 2015.

La Gazzetta dello Sport, for instance, thinks Mercedes is already knocking on the door of the 900 horse power mark.

“Can Renault and Ferrari get to Mercedes’ level? It’s going to be a very difficult challenge,” Red Bull designer Adrian Newey, who is stepping back from the front line this year, told Sky.

Australian Ricciardo, however, was the only driver to challenge Mercedes’ otherwise uninterrupted run of victories last year, and he is sounding confident.

“When I think back to Melbourne last year, we finished second after missing some of the pre-season testing,” he is quoted by France’s L’Equipe.

“Then Mercedes continued to develop through the season. But I hope that they have now reached the pinnacle, while on our side we have room to improve.

“If we have a good winter, we should catch up,” Red Bull driver Ricciardo added.