‘Daniel’s going to do that?’ Ricciardo shocks Sky F1 pundit

Daniel Ricciardo will be back on the Formula 1 starting grid at the upcoming Hungarian Grand Prix.

Ex-Formula 1 driver turned pundit Martin Brundle has admitted that Daniel Ricciardo’s move to AlphaTauri for the rest of the season has left him “surprised”, given how poorly the Red Bull sister side are performing.

It was announced towards the start of last week that Ricciardo would be replacing Nyck de Vries, who’s been sacked after just 10 races.

Some have criticised AlphaTauri for sacking the rookie so soon; however, little improvement was shown by the Dutch driver.

Ricciardo’s shock return to the grid comes just over six months on from his final race for McLaren, where he confirmed that he’d be taking a sabbatical.

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The Australian had been keen for a break after needing to rediscover his love for F1, raising questions as to why he’s accepted a return in the worst car on the grid.

Brundle admits Ricciardo’s move has left him slightly confused, with the pundit pondering whether there’s “another deal” involved for him accepting the seat for the rest of the season.

“I’m really pleased to see him back, but just my honest reaction was, ‘wow. Daniel’s going to do that, is he?’ It surprised me,” Brundle told Sky Sports news.

“Daniel’s always talked about he’s lost his mojo and he needs to get his enthusiasm back, and so I didn’t think he’d take that, unless there’s another deal that goes with it, a ‘you do this and then down the road we’ll do that’.”

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Ricciardo has expressed his intent on racing for Red Bull again one day, making some wonder whether his move to AlphaTauri is in pursuit of a seat at the main team once again.

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On the flip side, Ricciardo’s F1 career could shortly be over if he struggles at AlphaTauri, or is defeated by team-mate Yuki Tsunoda.

Regardless, Brundle is convinced that F1 is a “better place” with Ricciardo on the grid, something he will be back on at the upcoming Hungarian Grand Prix.

“My overriding feeling here is Formula One feels a better place when Daniel Ricciardo’s on the grid, and I hated seeing him having to loiter around all weekend,” added Brundle.