Australian F1 star Daniel Ricciardo is ready to sit out of the competition in 2023 but is determined to return beyond that.
Out of contract with McLaren at season’s end, Ricciardo has been linked to a number of teams but his options have quickly become limited.
Over the weekend, Alpine confirmed the signing of Pierre Gasly, while AlphaTauri swiftly replaced Gasly with Nyck de Vries.
Only Haas and Williams remain in need of a driver for next season, but it appears Ricciardo isn’t too keen on either option and is now prepared to spend a year on the sidelines.
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“I think the reality is now I won’t be on the grid in 2023. I think it’s now just trying to set up for 24,” Ricciardo said.
“It’s kind of like just hitting pause for a little bit, as I see it, and, let’s say, as far as my F1 career goes the full intention is for 24.
“As fun or cool as it sounds to compete in something else, the truth is mentally, I’m not there yet.
“I’m still so, so engaged in this and I think a bit of time off out of a seat will probably do me good.”
Just TWO SEATS remain on the #F1 2023 grid!
Who’s filling them? pic.twitter.com/3Eep5h6KR4
— Formula 1 (@F1) October 8, 2022
Ricciardo has had a difficult year in Formula 1 to date with his best finish coming last time out in Singapore where he placed fifth.
The 33-year-old has raced in consistently in F1 since 2012 and has won a total of eight races.
The Aussie was recently linked with a move to Mercedes next year where he would become their reserve driver with Lewis Hamilton and George Russell to continue leading the team.
Such a move could still be on the cards for Ricciardo with his recent comments suggesting he may be happy taking up such a position until a better move presents itself in 2024.