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Ricciardo focused on performance, not F1 seat for 2025

Ricciardo focused on performance, not F1 seat for 2025
© Reuters
Daniel Ricciardo has expressed uncertainty about his career prospects in Formula 1 beyond the 2024 season.

Daniel Ricciardo has expressed uncertainty about his career prospects in Formula 1 beyond the 2024 season.

The 34-year-old Australian driver's flagging fortunes were rejuvenated by Red Bull midway through last year after an early and unanticipated end to his tenure with McLaren in 2022.

Ricciardo, now competing for Red Bull's junior team Alpha Tauri, has openly voiced his aspirations to rejoin the main Red Bull Racing team.

Yet, it is Yuki Tsunoda who has consistently outperformed Ricciardo this season, fueling rumors that Red Bull might consider replacing Ricciardo with the eager reserve driver Liam Lawson in 2025.

Further complicating matters, however, is that Tsunoda's strong performances have attracted the attention of other teams such as Williams, Haas, Sauber, Alpine, and Aston Martin, which will be powered by Tsunoda's sponsor Honda starting in 2026.

"It's a luxury problem," Dr. Helmut Marko, Red Bull's F1 consultant, told Kleine Zeitung.

"We also have another Honda driver besides Tsunoda in Ayumu Iwasa, and both have long-term contracts with us, so we have to see how this matter continues."

Despite the speculation, RB CEO Peter Bayer recently hinted at a desire to retain both Ricciardo and Tsunoda for 2025.

"I think we're very happy with both of our drivers," Bayer stated. "And honestly, we're not wasting time discussing ifs and whens. We have a very strong lineup."

Reacting to his boss's remarks, Ricciardo commented, "It's nice to hear, but I'm not thinking about it too much yet. I first want to consistently do better.

"I'm obviously not happy with my deficit (to Tsunoda). It's frustrating. We're trying to find where I'm losing time, but there is always something. After all, this is Formula 1 and it's never perfect."

Nonetheless, Ricciardo remains confident in the support he receives from Red Bull and RB.

"Everyone continues to support me," he confirmed. "They know I can do it, but this year it's just a challenge to do it every weekend. That's why I don't want to rest on my laurels now, make myself comfortable and focus on the future. I want to do better now."

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