Alex Albon dismisses Daniel Ricciardo claim after sacking

Daniel Ricciardo will serve as Red Bull’s third driver in 2023 to aid him in his hunt to return to the grid in 2024.

When it was announced midway through last season that Daniel Ricciardo would be replaced by Oscar Piastri at McLaren for 2023, many fans were left wondering what the future held for the Australian.

In the end, the 33-year-old rejected the chance to race for Haas in favour of a year serving as Red Bull’s third driver, claiming that he could not see himself racing at the back of the grid.

Some fans have recently compared his situation to that of Williams’ Alex Albon, who himself spent a year as Red Bull’s reserve driver in 2021 while hunting for a return to the grid.

The Thai driver has been quick to dismiss these suggestions however, explaining that he did not have a choice other than to be off the grid for a year, having to work hard to get back with a team.

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“Mine wasn’t a choice – his is,” said Albon.

“I think he’s a different age and in a different frame of mind. When I was away from Formula 1, I think I was 24 and there was a lot of hunger and desire to get back in.

“I don’t know as I can only speak for myself, but I imagine Daniel – who has been a very successful racing driver – probably wouldn’t want to join a team unless it was a top team.

“it would be like he’s just restarting his racing career again, which I am more than happy to do. I would do it ten times over, I think that’s really the main difference.”

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While Ricciardo has politely declined the opportunity to race for Haas at the back of the grid, Albon grabbed the chance to return to F1 with Williams with both hands in 2022.

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The Thai driver has been impressive since returning to the sport, outperforming his teammate Nicholas Latifi last season and putting in some stellar performances along the way.

Albon’s role with the team will be slightly different in 2023 however, as he will have to lead the team for the first time following the appointment of American Rookie Logan Sargeant to replace Latifi.

Only time will tell what the future holds for Daniel Ricciardo, but fans all over the world hope that the 2022 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix was not the last time they saw the Australian in F1.