Daniel Ricciardo makes psychologist revelation

Daniel Ricciardo has admitted that he has had to use a phycologist to help deal with a tough year at McLaren.

Daniel Ricciardo has never found the success he would have dreamed of since he left Red Bull.

The Australian was impressive at Renault however since his move to McLaren two years ago he has not set the world alight, despite picking up the team’s only win in this period at Monza.

McLaren have decided to make a change at the end of the season, with Ricciardo seeing his contract terminated in favour of young Oscar Piastri and now looking at a reserve driver role at a top team such as Mercedes or Red Bull before returning to the grid in 2024.

“It would be good to get next year sorted before the final race in Abu Dhabi,” said Ricciardo when asked about his future plans.

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“It is fair to say it was unexpected, given I was on a three-year deal that had a year left to run.

“It’s not something you can prepare for. But I’d already had some honest discussions with Andreas Seidl and Zak Brown earlier in the year to see what we could do to improve things.

“It put me in a tough position of thinking: ‘What next?”

The 33-year-old was the star of Netflix’s ‘Drive to Survive’ with his jokester personality and constant positivity really shining through, letting fans see the real Daniel Ricciardo, however this year the fan favourite has not been the same, seeing downbeat and often being spotted sat on his own.

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The eight-time race winner has now revealed that he has been speaking to a psychologist to deal with the effects of his poor form on his mental health.

“Whenever we thought we had found a solution, along would come another set of challenges,” he said.

“When you put so much into something, and it doesn’t work out there is sadness. It gets to you. Last year it affected me a little bit too much.

“I wouldn’t be my usual bubbly self. I would be reluctant if someone said let’s go out for dinner. I would need some cajoling. I let it get to me.

“I started to speak to a psychologist last year. The most challenging year I have had.”

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Ricciardo has also explained how much a race weekend can affect a driver’s life, with it sometimes becoming overwhelming and taking over.

“Racing is very much results driver and dictates your Sunday happiness. I was neglecting friendships and thought it would be good to talk to someone to make sure the two sides of my life didn’t cross over,” he explained.

“You need perspective. And with the calendar being so long, it was hard to remove yourself from what was happening in the racing.”