Daniel Ricciardo has revealed his fellow Australian Mark Webber apologised to him in regard to his role in Oscar Piastri’s move to McLaren.
Piastri was finally announced before FP2 of the Dutch Grand Prix as Ricciardo’s replacement at McLaren for 2023 following a case taken by Alpine to the Contract Recognition Board.
The board ruled in McLaren’s favour and as a result, they were able to announce his arrival to the team just over a week after they had confirmed they were terminating Ricciardo’s contract early and he will leave McLaren at the end of 2022.
Piastri is represented by F1 racer turned agent Webber, and Ricciardo has revealed his fellow Australian had sought him out for a conversation and offered an apology during the Dutch Grand Prix weekend.
“We hadn’t seen obviously each other in person [since it all started],” Ricciardo, who replaced Webber at Red Bull in 2014, said as per Motorsport.com.
“I feel he didn’t need to, but he felt like he wanted to, in a way, apologise and try to just see how I’m doing.
“Obviously I know how this sport is – it’s nothing personal to me. And he wanted to make sure I knew that and understood that. And just to make sure I felt okay.
“He feels really bad, obviously, [in] how it’s gone down and obviously how things have been put out there in the media. So yeah, it was obviously nice to speak to him.”
Ricciardo also said he had spoken to Piastri, who joins Formula 1 with quite a point to prove given the manner of his arrival, and assured him there was no bad blood between the two of them.
“I’ve also spoken to Oscar, to be honest, and just made sure there’s no bad feelings there. I understand how this works,” the F1 driver of 11 years said.
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“He’s trying to make it, he’s trying to get into Formula 1. And this moment should be also really big for him. I don’t want to make it a bad situation for him.
“That’s that, it’s nothing personal. So that’s all the conversation was. And I truly wish him well. I want him to have a good run in Formula 1.
“So it’s just the circumstances and that’s how it is. But I still obviously like Mark a lot and respect him.”
Ricciardo and Webber have ensured an Australian has been on the F1 grid for every season since 2002 and Ricciardo overtook Webber this season to become the most experienced Australian in F1 history.