Seidl slams Brown for Ricciardo criticism as they confirm contract situation

McLaren team principal Andreas Seidl has spoken out against CEO Zak Brown and confirmed Daniel Ricciardo's place at the team for 2023.

Daniel Ricciardo’s future at the McLaren F1 Team has been one of the most talked about topics so far this season, following Zak Brown’s negative comments about the Australian driver.

Ricciardo has struggled yet again this season; the 32-year-old currently has 11 points to his name after seven rounds.

Lando Norris on the other hand has 48 points, and has continued to cement his place as the star driver in the McLaren team.

Ricciardo’s run of poor performances raised concerns over his future at the British team, with Brown telling the media that “expectations” hadn’t been met.

The McLaren CEO has possibly been a reason as to why the ‘Honey Badger’ has struggled as of late, Brown has had no issue telling the media about all the “mechanisms” in place to fire Ricciardo.

Despite all of this, Ricciardo is under contract until the end of 2023; it’s also believed that only the Australian has the power to end his contract early.

READ: Wolff apologises to Hamilton as Russell again finishes ahead

Ahead of the Azerbaijan Grand Prix, Ricciardo was determined to “prove” his doubters wrong once again.

In actual fact, Ricciardo is having a much better weekend at the Baku City Circuit and isn’t too far behind Norris.

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Ricciardo qualified 12th for the race, one-place behind his British team-mate.

The Australian driver has been much more like himself around Baku, both on and off the circuit.

This could be as a result of the Australian clearing the air with Brown, something which he informed the media about in Azerbaijan.

“We’ve had a catch up and the clarity is clear for us moving forward,” Ricciardo told reporters.

“My contract is clear with the team – until the end of next year I’m fully committed. I’ve certainly voiced that.

“And I do truly believe that I have the full support of the team and we want to do it together.”

Whilst Brown has spoken out against Ricciardo on a number of occasions, team principal Andreas Seidl has done the complete opposite.

The German see’s Ricciardo as part of the team’s future; Seidl is very much in support of the Australian driver.

“Yes, Daniel has a contract with us,” he told Sky Deutschland.

“Formula 1 is a team sport and it doesn’t matter to me whether it’s mechanics, engineers or the driver.

“It’s important that we have a culture within the team where internally we are very clear about things that we need to improve.”

Incredibly, Seidl went on to seemingly criticise Brown over the way he’s treated the 32-year-old.

Seidl explained how in all his years of working in Formula 1, he’s never seen a driver “become faster” following public criticism.

“It is very clear that it is my job as team boss to protect the team from the outside world,” the German continued.

“In the last 20 years I have not seen a driver become faster because he was publicly criticised.

“We have a contract with Daniel for next year and that’s why we’re all staying calm, keeping working hard and trying to find those percentages that he is missing at the moment.

“And then we look forward to better results with him again.”