Daniel Ricciardo acknowledges friction with Red Bull team-mate Max Verstappen could be inevitable if the pair were challenge for the Formula One world title, describing it as "part of the game".
Mercedes' prolonged period of dominance in F1 continued in 2016, leaving the chasing pack struggling to keep up, as Nico Rosberg and Lewis Hamilton once again battled for supremacy.
Red Bull were the best of the rest, but the gulf to Mercedes was such that Ricciardo and exciting newcomer Verstappen were able to race in harmony.
But amiable Australian Ricciardo is savvy enough to realise the positive working relationship is sure to be tested if Red Bull can challenge for glory.
Speaking to The Guardian, Ricciardo said: "I can't be naive and think we are still going to love each other no matter what, even if we are banging wheel to wheel every race.
"We are competitors. If there is tension or friction as the season goes on that's part of the game."
Red Bull have history when it comes to warring drivers, with Sebastian Vettel often at odds with Mark Webber during their time racing together between 2010 and 2013.
The prospect of a rivalry between the current line-up is one that would be sure to make motorsport enthusiasts purr given the fearless approach to racing held by Ricciardo and Verstappen.
And the older man recognises the importance of staying one step ahead of Verstappen.
"If Lewis [Hamilton] beats me in a Mercedes, I can tell the world he beat me because his car is better," he added.
"But if Max beats me every race I am going to run out of excuses, so certainly your team-mate is the number one person you want to beat.
"If I am putting myself out there and taking some of these risks, then I want to do it properly. If I am going to race I will put everything on the line."
25 de marzo 2017
|Federer sees off Tiafoe in Miami opener|
|Vinales handed Qatar pole after qualifying is washed out|
|Suarez agent denies Napoli offer|
|Rashford eyes Euro Under-21s spot despite Mourinho concerns|
|Juventus midfielder Khedira fit to lead Germany|
|Tamim ton fires Tigers past Sri Lanka|
|Watch: Gerrard volley lights up Liverpool Legends match|
|Mauger bows out with dramatic win, Robshaw returns in Quins romp|
|Rampant Rahm races into Match Play quarters|
|South Africa 3 Guinea-Bissau 1: Dream debut for Tau as Erasmus returns with a goal|
|Wehrlein: I´ll be back in China|
|Fuming Alonso will not accept McLaren failure|
|England boss Southgate praises captain Hart for putting Euro 2016 woe to bed|
|Bertrand wants England to keep up with Jones´ rugby stars|
|No points dropped is the aim for Germany - Low|
|Smith can be one of Australia´s greatest - Wade|
|The weather, not transfer targets, attracts Mourinho to Croatia v Ukraine|
|Everton ready to support stricken Coleman|
|Verratti backs Juve to beat Barca|
|No intent from tearful Taylor - Long reflects on sickening Coleman injury|
|Berlusconi warns suitors off Donnarumma|
|Doping ´the worst thing to be accused of´, says Wiggins|
|Sunwolves denied by late Stormers surge|
|Redskins´ Cousins gets creative in revealing baby´s gender|
|Barcelona to name stadium after Cruyff|
|Hasler eyes swift response after Manly thrash Bulldogs|
|A-League Review: Sydney confirmed as premiers after Victory slip up in Brisbane|
|Kuldeep revels in dream Dharamsala debut|
|Ricciardo: I crashed for the right reason|
|Man, he´s a great player - Dempsey gushes over Pulisic performance|
|Kuldeep shines as India respond to Kohli absence, Smith hundred|
|Costa finding his feet under Lopetegui for Spain|
|Hernandez ´never dreamed´ of equalling Borgetti record|
|I want a team that wants me - Manchester City exile Hart open on future|
|Rory ready for Augusta despite lack of action|
|Kobe the inspiration for Booker´s 70-point showing|
|Chelsea target Sule could not resist Bayern|
|Terrible, horrible and a disaster - Palmer bemoans qualifying woe|
|Spain are not unbeatable - Buffon rallies Italy after 1000th game|
|Lara, Waqar back Root to flourish as England captain|
|Hamilton ´incredibly proud´ of Mercedes after taking Melbourne pole|
|Hamilton clinches blistering pole, but Vettel splits Mercedes|
|LeBron leads Cavs as Harden stars for Rockets|
|Kerber, Venus and Halep through as seeds fall|
|No sweat for Nadal, Nishikori in Miami|
|Rain cuts short first day in Hamilton|
|United States 6 Honduras 0: Pulisic, Dempsey star for hosts|
|Mexico 2 Costa Rica 0: Hernandez draws level with Borgetti|
|Kohli ruled out of fourth Test against Australia|
|Booker explodes for 70 points against Celtics, but Suns lose|
|He is being talked about everywhere – Lloris impressed by Mbappe|
|Sauber´s Wehrlein replaced by Giovinazzi in Melbourne|
|DeChambeau among leaders in Puerto Rico|
|Mickelson, Dustin Johnson roll into last 16|
|Nadal celebrates routine success over Sela|
|Suspended Bale ´didn´t even go for a tackle´|
|De Rossi: Italy star Verratti is one of my best team-mates|
|Warrington´s nightmare continues as Rhinos and Hull FC take charge|
24 de marzo 2017
|Gloucester worsen Bristol´s Premiership relegation woes|
|It´s a bad break – O´Neill saddened by Coleman injury|
|Taylor ´despondent´ after horror tackle on Coleman|
|We can make a wonderful Italy team - Ventura optimistic after win|
|Ulster keep Scarlets at bay despite late red card in Newport|
|Italy 2 Albania 0: De Rossi, Immobile on target in Buffon´s milestone appearance|
|Republic of Ireland 0 Wales 0: Seamus Coleman suffers horror injury in Dublin stalemate|
|Spain 4 Israel 1: Silva, Vitolo, Costa and Isco secure straightforward win for Lopetegui|
|Barca deny making contact with Athletic over Valverde|
|Robson backs Alli to make tournament impact for England|
|England was my country - Debutant Keane explains Ireland switch|
|Vinales recovers from first Yamaha crash to extend Qatar dominance|