Max Verstappen gives Daniel Ricciardo bad news ahead of 2023 reunion

Daniel Ricciardo will serve as Red Bull’s third driver in 2023, as he looks to regain confidence ahead of a potential return to the grid.

When it was announced that Daniel Ricciardo was set to be released from McLaren at the end of last season, there were many rumoured destinations for the Australian.

The 33-year-old decided to reject the chance to remain on the grid with Haas in favour of taking a year away to wait for an opportunity to open up for him at a top team.

Ricciardo eventually decided to return back to Red Bull, the team where he experienced the most success in his career.

The Australian’s contract with the team will not see him promoted to a race seat according to team principal Christian Horner, but it will see him take part in promotional activities and simulator work.

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The work in the simulator is something that Ricciardo has said he is looking forward to, as it will allow him to see where he stacks up compared to Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez, potentially seeing him rebuild his confidence in the process.

While Verstappen will be excited to be reunited with Ricciardo this season, the Dutchman has given his former teammate bad news, suggesting that he should stay away from the simulator.

“Sometimes the days in the sim are long but I am convinced that this kind of work is worth doing,” said the 25-year-old.

“As far as I’m concerned, I don’t want there to be a test driver working the simulator like other teams do. I want to work on it myself because everyone has their own driving style.

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“It helps me keep my concentration. After all, there’s not much to do at some other than train on the simulator. Plus it’s something I enjoy.”

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Verstappen spends a lot of his free time away from the racetrack of factory on a racing sim, taking part in a number of virtual events over the course of the season.

The recent virtual 24-hour Le Mans ended in disaster however, as the Dutchman and his Team Redline teammates disconnected from the event numerous times, leading to Verstappen calling for fans to boycott the game.

Ricciardo will be itching to get involved back at Red Bull, with the Australian desperately in need of regaining his confidence if he is to stand any chance of being given a race seat for 2024.