Red Bull reach decision to ‘immediately’ fire Nyck de Vries, sign Daniel Ricciardo

Ralf Schumacher believes Daniel Ricciardo is set to replace the struggling Nyck de Vries at AlphaTauri, despite mixed messages from Helmut Marko.

In a season filled with disappointment and underwhelming performances, Nyck de Vries has found himself under immense pressure to prove his worth in Formula 1. 

However, it seems the decision regarding his future at Red Bull Racing has already been made, according to former Formula 1 driver Ralf Schumacher.

De Vries, who has struggled to adapt to the demanding world of Formula 1 since the beginning of the championship, has been plagued by first-lap incidents and a disastrous weekend in Azerbaijan. 

These issues, compounded by Red Bull advisor Helmut Marko’s statement that De Vries was on a “yellow card,” have seemingly sealed his fate within the team.

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Despite Marko failing to provide a specific timeframe for the decision, Red Bull Racing finds itself in a comfortable position with reserve driver Daniel Ricciardo waiting in the wings. 

Ricciardo, an eight-time Grand Prix winner, has expressed his willingness to take a chance with Red Bull’s junior team, AlphaTauri, if it opens the door to the senior squad.

However, Ricciardo’s on-track performances have been a stumbling block in his quest for a promotion. 

His most recent outing in a Formula 1 car was at the season-ending Abu Dhabi Grand Prix with McLaren, where he finished a disappointing P9. 

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He now has the opportunity to demonstrate his abilities and reclaim his lost form during a Pirelli tyre test at the Silverstone circuit.

The outcome of this test will likely play a pivotal role in determining De Vries’ future in Formula 1. 

“We’ll look at the tyre test, and then we can talk,” Marko stated, implying that a decision will be made based on Ricciardo’s performance.

However, Marko contradicted himself in a separate interview, suggesting that De Vries may still have a chance to prove himself in a race or two before his fate is sealed. 

The Red Bull motorsport advisor stated that he would answer questions about De Vries’ future “as soon as we get to Zandvoort.”

One pundit who appears certain about the decision is Ralf Schumacher. 

After Sunday’s race, where De Vries finished in 17th place, the former F1 driver told Sky Deutschland, “The decision has been made, I’m pretty sure… 

“It’s a shame for him that he probably can’t drive Zandvoort – I would guess – but also good for Daniel Ricciardo and for the team.”

De Vries, currently one of two drivers yet to score a point this season, has struggled to make an impact on the championship. 

His best result so far is a P12 finish at Monza, in stark contrast to his teammate Logan Sargeant’s P11.

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Red Bull team boss Christian Horner initially stated that there were no plans to replace De Vries. 

However, he added, “Of course we have a junior program, and Daniel is also on the sidelines. 

“He will first test our car at Silverstone, and then we will see how good he is and how confident he is in the car.”