Red Bull will sign Daniel Ricciardo on this one condition

Daniel Ricciardo's move to AlphaTauri has been seen by many as an attempt to put Sergio Perez under pressure.

Ex-Formula 1 driver Ralf Schumacher believes Daniel Ricciardo will replace Sergio Perez at Red Bull next season, if he “performs well” for AlphaTauri.

It was announced last Tuesday that Ricciardo will be completing the remainder of the 2023 season for the Faenza-based team, following the abrupt sacking of rookie Nyck de Vries.

De Vries has sensationally been sacked just 10 races into his debut campaign and replaced Red Bull’s development driver.

Ricciardo had returned to Red Bull this season in the behind-the-scenes role, following his departure from McLaren at the end of 2022.

Want to work in Formula 1? Browse the latest F1 job vacancies

His role has seen him complete several simulator sessions, whilst he finally got to drive the RB19 in a Pirelli tyre test on the same day as De Vries’ sacking.

Ricciardo’s work has impressed Red Bull, hence why they’ve loaned him to the sister team to replace De Vries.

Why Ricciardo would accept a seat in the worst car on the grid has left many confused, especially as he’s looking to rebuild his career.

Driving the AT04 could actually do the opposite, if he fails to deliver strong results.

Article continues below

However, if he does well and beats team-mate Yuki Tsunoda, then he will give Red Bull something to think about if Perez continues to struggle.

Perez is on a five-race streak of having not made Q3, whilst he’s also only claimed one podium in that period.

Should Ricciardo deliver and Perez continue to struggle, then Schumacher is confident in saying that the Australian will be alongside Max Verstappen in 2024.

“For me, it looks like if Daniel Ricciardo performs well in the AlphaTauri in the remaining races, he will be sitting next to Max Verstappen next year,” said Schumacher to Sky Germany.

READ: Sergio Perez suffers more embarrassment

“Because I don’t believe they will keep Perez if he continues in the same way next year.”

Ricciardo’s return to the sister team will begin at this weekend’s Hungarian Grand Prix, with it interestingly marking the first time since 2013 that he’s driven for the side.

Ricciardo raced for AlphaTauri – known previously as Toro Rosso – in 2012 and 2013, before moving to Red Bull in 2014 after fellow Aussie Mark Webber retired from the pinnacle of motorsport.