Daniel Ricciardo makes clear statement in response to Helmut Marko criticism

Sam Cooper
Daniel Ricciardo and Helmut Marko

Daniel Ricciardo is the latest driver in Helmut Marko’s crosshairs.

Daniel Ricciardo has denied Helmut Marko’s claim that he will have to “come up with something soon” and said he is racing in F1 because he wants to be.

The Australian came in for some criticism from Red Bull advisor Marko after two poor performances in the opening two races but Ricciardo has now hit back.

Daniel Ricciardo responds to Helmut Marko criticism

After the race in Saudi, Marko suggested Ricciardo had “to come up with something soon” or could be facing the axe.

“There is a lot at stake this season for both Yuki [Tsunoda] and Daniel,” Marko said.

“Yuki’s qualifying was very good and Ricciardo will have to come up with something soon.”

But Ricciardo said he wanted to get better for himself rather than anyone else telling him he had to.

“It’s not annoying,” he said of Marko’s criticism in Melbourne. “The most important part of our job is the driving but a big part of it is talking [to the media].

“When things go well, everyone is talking positively and when they don’t, they don’t talk so positively.

“I know that I came back here because I believe I can do it, I believe I belong here.

“When people ask ‘do you have a point to prove’ or ‘keep people happy’… I am here for myself because I know I can still do it.

“I do want to make people proud but if someone says something, I know it already because I have told myself that, and I know what is expected.

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“So, of course, I want to be qualifying in Q3 and get the results I believe I can, but it’s tight, we are in such a tight midfield.

“In Bahrain in quali, I knew I didn’t quite put the lap together I should have and I put my hand up for that but that’s the difference from maybe P14 to Q3.

“End of Q1 in Saudi, P9 to P16 was less than a tenth so you can very quickly look like a hero or not.

“That’s where every tenth counts and that’s where I look to myself first.”

Ricciardo is one of many drivers out of contract at the end of this year and has previously stated that his goal is to retire at Red Bull.

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