Daniel Ricciardo’s ‘maybe makes no difference’ worry as fresh F1 doubts emerge

Michelle Foster
Daniel Ricciardo interviewed in front of RB signage

Daniel Ricciardo interviewed in front of RB signage

Pinning his hopes of a recovery on a new chassis, Daniel Ricciardo admits there’s a possibility it could “make no difference” but at least he’ll have peace of mind.

Billed as the driver to lead RB this season before taking Sergio Perez’s Red Bull race seat in 2025, in sharp contrast Ricciardo has found himself fighting for his F1 future.

Daniel Ricciardo: It’s one you don’t want to play up too high

Off the pace of his team-mate Yuki Tsunoda, Ricciardo is not only lagging behind in the qualifying stats but also in the points where it is 7-0 in the Japanese driver’s favour.

That’s led to Red Bull motorsport Helmut Marko all but warning Ricciardo that reserve driver Liam Lawson is waiting in the wings and that it would be “exciting for us if we could see him in Formula 1 this year” already.

However, Ricciardo is convinced his season will come right with the 34-year-old frequently insisting that this scenario is not a repeat of his McLaren troubles.

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And in order to give the driver peace of mind, he’ll take RB’s new chassis ahead of Friday’s practice hour at the Chinese Grand Prix.

“It’s one you don’t want to play up too high, because it could maybe make no difference,” he told Sky Sports. “But it is something where it’s like peace of mind.

“The plan was always to introduce the third chassis in Shanghai. Yuki has been happy with his. I understand why.

“I was like, ‘I’ll take it if he’s not taking it’, so I jumped at the opportunity.”

But with Marko’s comments about Tsunoda having Ricciardo “under control” in the opening races, the Aussie is hoping Red Bull take their time making a decision about their 2025 line-up.

“On one hand yes, because I haven’t shown the best me yet this year and the plan is to do that sooner than later of course,” he said.

“But also because I’m so focused on getting my season better here, I haven’t put too much energy or thought into the driver market.

“I know that if my results start getting better then things may happen, but I guess I’ve been too focused on getting my things right before worrying about what could happen elsewhere.”

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