Daniel Ricciardo reveals why he picked Red Bull over Mercedes

© LAT Images for Mercedes-Benz Grand Prix Ltd

In 2023 Daniel Ricciardo will return to Red Bull as the team’s third driver, but before that he was discussing a possible reserve role at Mercedes. What happened?

After McLaren announced they would not be retaining Daniel Ricciardo’s services in 2023, the Australian’s future in Formula 1 was in doubt.

However, Mercedes’ Toto Wolff has expressed interest in bringing Daniel in as the team’s reserve driver. Ricciardo reveals he had discussions about this with the German outfit.

“There were talks with Mercedes,” the Australian said on the ‘In the Fast Lane’ podcast.

“I was appreciative of their engagement because there was certainly an appetite for that.

“It kind of stalled a little bit, and then the Red Bull stuff started to make more and more sense and that had more and more legs, and then it kind of naturally progressed as it did.

“There was a part of me as well where, when I was at Red Bull, Mercedes was always the team. Of course, they were dominating. It was a team I was looking at.

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“I had some conversations with them back in the day, and to have a few more now was nice. Again, it was nice just to still be valued by some top teams after the couple of years I’ve had.”

However, Daniel ultimately decided to return to Red Bull as the team’s reserve driver. He explains why.

“I also thought I was more like ‘Look, I’ve obviously jumped around a bit the last few years and maybe a bit of familiarity would be good for me’, just to go back and work with people I’ve worked with before.

“I appreciate the cars have changed now but a car I gelled very well with, going to do the sim work, and this is the environment that would kind of settle me and make me figure out the next step beyond this and what I really want after [20]23,” Ricciardo concluded.

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