Lundgaard: ‘Ricciardo leaving could be my chance’

Mark Scott

Renault talking to "big names" for 2021.

Christian Lundgaard is eyeing an opportunity to bag himself a Formula 1 seat with Renault if Daniel Ricciardo decides to leave the team at the end of the season.

Renault has expressed their desire on multiple occasions to bring a driver all the way to Formula 1 from their academy and the 18-year-old Dane appears to be in a prime position to become the first to do so.

With Esteban Ocon signed up until the end of 2021, Lundgaard is looking at the other side of the Renault garage as Ricciardo’s initial two-year deal expires in 2020.

“It’s not in my hands,” Lundgaard told BT newspaper.

“And maybe not in Renault’s either. I think they are waiting for what Ricciardo does. Him leaving the team could be my chance.”

“Before all racing was put on hold, Lundgaard was gearing himself up for his first full season in Formula 2 with ART. As a result of the delay, Lundgaard cannot be completely sure yet if he is actually ready for Formula 1.

He added :”It’s hard to answer if I’m ready for Formula 1 in 2021. I’ve only done a single Formula 2 race, and no one knows when the 2020 season will start again.

“Renault expects me to be ready if the opportunity presents itself. Fortunately, I am quick to learn and good at adapting to new surroundings.”

Lundgaard is keeping himself in race mode by being a part of Formula 1’s Virtual Grand Prix series and will be in action at Interlagos alongside 2003 World Rally Champion Petter Solberg in the latest round at Interlagos.

Fellow Dane, Kevin Magnussen, has been struggling to see the benefits of virtual racing, but Lungaard has put that down to may be being an age thing.

“Of course it’s not the same as driving on the track, but I think it’s a generational issue,” he said.

“Drivers of my age have grown up with sim racing. To us it feels natural.

“In fact, I think you can learn a lot, both in terms of driving on the track but maybe even more about setting up the cars. I think you get smarter all the time.”

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