Daniel Ricciardo returned to his “home” joining red bull as a third driver in 2023.
Daniel Ricciardo had a rather horrible 2022 season. The Aussie scored only 37 points underperforming hugely compared to his teammate Lando Norris who scored 122 points this year. Moreover, the race pace and car control both seemed disastrous for Ricciardo.
It seems that the eight times race winner failed to adopt the new 2022 cars. This led to McLaren sacking Ricciardo for his Australian counterpart Oscar Piastri.
Nevertheless, Ricciardo decided to take time off from the sport in 2023. We won’t be seeing Ricciardo on the track driving for a team. However, we might still spot Ricciardo on the sidetracks as the Aussie joined red bull as a third driver.
Red bull team principal Christian Horner has acknowledged this fact. He has put stress on the “experience and knowledge” Ricciardo brings to the side:
“Daniel will give us the chance to diversify, assisting in the development of the car, aiding the team with his experience and knowledge of what it takes to succeed in F1,”
Ricciardo will still take his break
Switching to McLaren in 2021 now doesn’t look like the best decision Ricciardo made. Regardless, coming back to his first major team Ricciardo is all set to make a strong return in 2024.
Although Ricciardo is the third driver, this doesn’t mean we will see him in every race. Ricciardo has already made this clear to the team as the Aussie wants his break from the sport too:
“I won’t be at 24 races,”
“Otherwise I may as well still be on the grid. I made it clear that I needed time off.“
“It has beaten me down, the past couple of years, which is why I want a little bit of time removed. I want to find a part of myself again and rebuild a little bit.”
Can Ricciardo make a striking comeback in 2024? Can Ricciardo go back to his winning ways? We can only know that next year.
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