CEO reveals Daniel Ricciardo can choose between Red Bull and AlphaTauri in 2024

Daniel Ricciardo is set to return to the Formula 1 grid with Red Bull in 2024.

Daniel Ricciardo will soon decide between Red Bull and AlphaTauri, with new CEO Peter Bayer saying both the driver and Red Bull hierarchy will choose before 2024.

AlphaTauri team principal, Franz Tost, is leaving at the end of the year, and there are plenty of prospective drivers looking to make the AlphaTauri team.

Liam Lawson is currently leading the pack, ahead of F2 incumbents Jak Crawford, Zane Maloney, Ayuma Iwasa, Isack Hadjar, Dennis Haugar, and Enzo Fittipalda.

The Australian driver has expressed his desire to return to F1 full-time next year, having acted as Red Bull’s third driver in the 2023 season.

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Questioned about Ricciardo’s status going into 2024, Tost said: “The philosophy is quite clear – performance decides.

“Of course, the team philosophy is to educate young drivers but if young drivers are not currently there…”

Ricciardo is 34, which some have noted as a potential issue – given AlphaTauri’s penchant for nurturing and promoting young drivers. 

The Austrian team principal seemed to hint that Ricciardo would be welcome if AlphaTauri’s current roster of young players weren’t deemed ready for F1.

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He commented: “Some good young drivers are coming – Iwasa is doing a good job; Hadjar is doing a good job, but it’s simply a little bit too early for them. I see them later in our team.”

“If the time is too early then maybe we have to find another solution, but this has not been discussed so far.”

Of the youngsters at AlphaTauri, Lawson seems the most likely option, having spent two years in F2 and winning two of five races in Japan’s Super Formula to rank second in overall standings there.

Tost acknowledged this performance, saying “Liam did a good job when he drove for us last year in Abu Dhabi (in the young driver test).”

“He is currently doing a good job in Japan because it’s quite a tough championship over there.”

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The Austrian principal still refused to rule Ricciardo out, saying: “He’s obviously a world-class driver. He’s won seven grands prix in his career to date (eight, seven with Red Bull).”

“The first thing would be to see how he performs and where his motivation is.”

“From there, it’s a question for AlphaTauri as to their choices for the following season.”