Although Daniel Ricciardo wants to remain in Formula 1 next season, he says he’ll only consider offers “under the right circumstances”.
Ricciardo and McLaren returned from Formula 1’s summer break to announce that this season would be their last year together.
Both parties have been left disappointed by the Aussie’s results, Ricciardo struggling to match his team-mate Lando Norris.
As such they came to a mutual decision to end the relationship a year early.
But doing so late in the season has left Ricciardo with only a few options; Alpine, Haas and Williams.
Based on this season’s results only one of those teams, Alpine, could possibly be in contention for a podium with Haas racing for points and Williams struggling to move away from the bottom spot on the table.
Ricciardo concedes that while he is keen that this season is not his last in Formula 1, he will only join a new team under the “right circumstances”.
“A lot,” he told Sky Sports when asked if he wants to continue in the sport, “but under the right circumstances.
“I want to get back to winning, I want to get back to fighting for podiums and win. You know, that’s… going through everything I’ve gone through the last kind of handful of years, that’s what gives me the most happiness.
“One thing that has remained unchanged for me is I’ve never wanted to be a driver just to be on the grid.
“Of course I love this sport and I love everything that comes with it but especially like now at this point in my career it’s just about winning. Getting that taste, a taste of champagne or sparkling wine, whatever they call it.
“Under the right circumstances, the right opportunity, absolutely it’s where I want to be but obviously I might not have every option available. So we’ll see what time tells.”
His phone has been ringing with offers, or at least feelers, with ESPN reporting that Haas team boss Guenther Steiner is one of those who has called the eight-time grand prix winner.
Ricciardo has also received calls of support, but says it is no rush to make any decision.
“It has [been ringing],” he said, “which is it’s always a good thing.
“Because I was on holiday I kind of just wanted to put my phone away but of course it’s nice when you get the phone ringing and that’s that’s been positive.
“People obviously care for me but also support me and know that… this sounds really weird calling myself this but like the Honey Badger is still there soo these are all things that I obviously take with a smile.
“I don’t also want to make like rushed decisions, quick decisions. The last you know bit of time there’s obviously been ups and downs and for sure emotional at moments.
“So it’s just trying to like regroup everything, go racing and then see what feels right once they are all in this pipeline.”
He added: “That’s all I can say. But I’m also not hiding anything like I haven’t signed anything. There is nothing that I’m not saying or can’t tell. At this moment I’m a free man.”