Daniel Ricciardo ‘stoked’ as he looks to pounce on Sergio Perez’s woes

Daniel Ricciardo last raced for Red Bull's sister team in 2013, prior to replacing Mark Webber at the main fold in 2014.

After just over six months away, Daniel Ricciardo is already set to return to the Formula 1 grid, following a shock announcement by Red Bull and AlphaTauri.

It was confirmed on Tuesday that rookie Nyck de Vries had been sacked from the Faenza-based team after just 10 races, with Ricciardo having been loaned by Red Bull to complete the remainder of the season for AlphaTauri.

The last time Ricciardo raced for Red Bull’s sister team was back in 2013, prior to replacing Mark Webber at the Austrians in 2014.

Ricciardo is certainly very happy to be back on the grid with the “Red Bull family”, starting next weekend at the Hungarian Grand Prix.

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“I’m stoked to be back on track with the Red Bull family!” Ricciardo said following the announcement

Ricciardo has clearly impressed Red Bull as their development driver since leaving McLaren, given that for the majority of the year so far, the Austrians have rejected the idea of fielding the Aussie.

He reportedly wowed team principal Christian Horner on Tuesday whilst driving the RB19 at the Silverstone International Circuit, in a Pirelli tyre test.

His best time from the day of testing is believed to have been seven-tenths slower than Verstappen’s, an impressive feat given that he last drove a current-spec car at the 2022 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

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Horner is pleased to see that the eight-time race winner hasn’t “lost any form” during his sabbatical from racing, something which has left the Red Bull family “excited to see” how he performs at AlphaTauri.

“It is great to see Daniel hasn’t lost any form while away from racing and that the strides he has been making in his sim sessions translate on track,” Horner said.

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“His times during the tyre test were extremely competitive. It was a very impressive drive and we are excited to see what the rest of the season brings for Daniel on loan at Scuderia AlphaTauri.”

Performing well at AlphaTauri will certainly be a challenge for the 33-year-old, given that they currently possess one of the worst cars on the grid.

If he delivers in the AT04 though, then it could put him in contention for Sergio Perez’s Red Bull seat if he continues to struggle.