After a premature end to his contract with McLaren, Daniel Ricciardo was left without a seat for the 2023 Formula 1 season. The Australian ended up signing for reigning champions Red Bull as the reserve driver for the next season. However, Ricciardo has now revealed that it was actually his ‘desire’ to spend the upcoming season on the sidelines, despite talks with another team over a race seat.
“There was a couple of times where [Ferrari] was linked. But, I think coming back to a seat next year as Guenther [Steiner, Haas Team Principal] said, he reached out and stuff. The more… days that passed and, especially as I did the triple-header to get back into the second half of the season – so three days on the bounce – it became more and more clear that it wasn’t about what phone call I was receiving; it was about me acknowledging that I just ultimately don’t want to be competing next year.”
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“So, in a way I am glad that, let’s say, a top team didn’t reach out, because it’s one of those ones where you probably feel, ‘Oh, I’ve got to sign it’, but I think deep down I was just craving a bit of distance,” added Ricciardo. The eight-time Grand Prix winner says that he believes a season on the sidelines could prove more beneficial to him than a racing season, calling it a “burnout”.
McLaren brought in Oscar Piastri to replace Daniel Ricciardo as the teammate to Lando Norris. Meanwhile Red Bull carries on with the pairing of reigning world champion Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez. McLaren has also revealed that it will launch its 2023 car on February 13.
Stay tuned to TOI Auto for all updates on the 2023 Formula 1 season!Source