Daniel Ricciardo handed boost as he targets 2024 F1 return

Daniel Ricciardo has been absent from the Formula 1 grid since he was dropped by McLaren at the end of the 2022 season.

Daniel Ricciardo has been given an encouraging boost of support in his bid to return to the Formula 1 grid, as the Australian looks to find a way back into the driving seat.

Ricciardo was unceremoniously dropped by McLaren, with the Papaya outfit cutting his contract short after two disappointing seasons.

Having failed to find a new seat, Ricciardo returned to his old team Red Bull in the form of a reserve driver, tasked with media appearance and supporting the development of the RB19.

While a popular driver with fans and teams alike, Ricciardo has found it challenging to get back on the grid due to the limited number of options, especially as he wants to join a team that has a competitive chance.

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With Red Bull, Ferrari and Mercedes seemingly all content with their line-ups, it’s not clear where Ricciardo would be able to go next season.

Valtteri Bottas’ trainer Antti Vierula has revealed his thoughts on the Australian’s extended break, believing that the time away from the driving seat could be more beneficial for Ricciardo in the long run.

“There is an impact of having a long break, but it can have a positive impact if it’s not too long,” Vierula told Grosvenor Sport.

“If you sit out a season after racing for years, I don’t see too much impact, he’s been good straight away.

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“There are not too many examples of comebacks, although Michael Schumacher did back in the day and I hope Daniel can find a seat too. 

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“He’s young and talented, keeping himself busy, so I don’t see the issue. Maybe the first few days of testing will be difficult, but I think it would be fairly quick.”

Ricciardo’s best option of a return could come at Red Bull’s junior team, with the Australian having been floated as a potential replacement for Nyck de Vries should the Dutchman not improve swiftly.

Currently, de Vries is one of two drivers to be pointless after five rounds, having failed to match his teammates performance of two top ten finishes.