Daniel Ricciardo gives blunt assessment of Red Bull ‘gamble’

Daniel Ricciardo will return to Red Bull in 2023 to serve as the team’s third driver, following his release from McLaren.

The career of Daniel Ricciardo will always be one of question marks and what ifs, as the Australian appeared to have the world at his feet during his early career.

Following an impressive start to life in F1 with Toro Rosso, Ricciardo was promoted to the Red Bull senior team in 2014 to partner four-time world champion Sebastian Vettel.

Following Vettel’s departure to Ferrari, Ricciardo established himself as the number one driver at Red Bull, picking up wins and podiums as he hunted for his first world championship title.

Unfortunately for the Australian the dominance of Mercedes combined with Red Bull’s unreliable Renault power unit prevented him from ever winning the title with the energy drink giants, much to Ricciardo’s disappointment.

READ: Key details revealed about Red Bull’s 2023 car as major update to come

Things began to turn sour for Ricciardo in 2016 when young Max Verstappen was brought into the team to replace Daniil Kvyat, with Red Bull clearly seeing the Dutchman as the future of the team.

Ricciardo initially struck up a strong relationship with Verstappen, but it quickly became apparent that Red Bull favoured their young star, causing the Australian to take the decision to leave the team and hunt for success with Renault.

Since departing Red Bull, Ricciardo has picked up a single win during his time with Renault and McLaren and now finds himself returning to the energy drink giants to serve as their third driver as McLaren part ways with the 33-year-old.

Many have suggested that Ricciardo should have stayed at Red Bull, as this would have brought him much more on track success, but the eight-time race winner has suggested that he has no regrets.

Article continues below

“Obviously at the time I felt like it was right for me. I felt like I needed a change and I needed to kind of just remove myself a bit,” he said.

READ: Helmut Marko reveals new negotiations with Sebastian Vettel

“If I continued [with Red Bull], would that urge have grown? Would I have become, let’s say, more curious or less happy, or whatever?

“It’s not a sure thing that it would have been great if I stayed. I don’t look back and say, ‘man, I shouldn’t have [left]’. But of course, I can be honest with myself and say, ‘yeah, I took a little bit of a gamble on myself’.”

Ricciardo had claimed that his move to Red Bull to drive mainly the simulator does not spell the end of his F1 career, as he hopes that his year with his former employers will keep him relevant in the sport and keep him in contention for any seat vacancies that arrive over the next couple of season.