F1 News 2022: Christian Horner backs Daniel Ricciardo for vacant Alpine seat

Red Bull team principal Christian Horner has advised Alpine to hand over the vacant seat for 2023 to Daniel Ricciardo, claiming he would seek an Australian driver if he heads the Enstone-based team.

Since breaking ties with Red Bull in 2018, Ricciardo has endured four dominating seasons in Formula 1, but is now back in 14th place with 19 points in the drivers’ standings.

Two podiums for Renault in the second half of 2020 and last year’s thrilling Monza victory, which saw McLaren secure a 1-2 finish, were the only highlights of a disappointing period for the Perth driver.

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Ricciardo then faced the consequences, with McLaren dumping the 33-year-old with 12 months left on his contract and replacing him with young compatriot Oscar Piastri.

Ricciardo has only six races left in 2022 to convince other teams to pursue his signature, but currently has only vacancies at Williams, Alfa Romeo, Alpine and Haas.

Although a setback of sorts, rekindling the partnership with Alpine (formerly Renault) seems to be Ricciardo’s most logical objective.

speak above F1: Beyond the Grid On the podcast, Horner claimed that Ricciardo has the ability to win races and finish on the podium despite his recent slump.

“I think I’ll probably go[with Ricciardo]to be honest,” he said.

“It’s clear they’ve known him for a few seasons now and he scored podiums very well together in his last season there. I think he’s the type of guy who can rebuild him.

“For some reason it was clearly not a great experience for him[at McLaren]but I remember some drives he made for us, some wins, some podiums, some amazing overtakes. There is a need.” He was able to perform…it is still there. Maybe he just needs a little reset.

“I hope he gets another chance to come back on the grid next year because he’s not just forgotten how to get results.”

But not everyone agrees with Horner.

last week, Former F1 World Champion Jacques Villeneuve Alpine, or any team for that matter, wondered why they would pursue Ricardo’s signing after four “terrible” years in the sport for the Australians.

Villeneuve’s reaction was painfully candid when asked after the Italian Grand Prix if he was surprised that Ricciardo was not touted as a candidate.

“Why him?” said the 1997 world champion f1 tv.

“He had two bad years at Renault and two worse years at McLaren. That’s four years. Almost half of his F1 career was bad.

“Alpine has no reason to take him, especially if he has driven before.

“Modern cars don’t seem to suit his driving style.

“He was impressive at Red Bull. He showed some amazing overtaking. He was ahead of Max at first. But eventually Max started to understand him. And after the switch something seemed to happen that he couldn’t deal with.He never recovered from it.”

potential tongue slip While chatting with Mexican driver Sergio Perez after the Dutch Grand Prix, Ricciardo may have revealed his intention to take a break from F1 and return in 2024.

However, Villeneuve advised against the move.

“It can make him lazy,” he explained.

“If you know in the paddock that if you’re Alonso, Schumacher, you’re a world champion, you’ve won a lot of races, you can always give your best no matter what, take a year off. You can take the season, after four bad years, don’t do it.

“I will take what I can. If I am offered to drive in Formula 1, I will use every cockpit. In public I would say ‘I don’t want to drive for the back team’ but that is the only deal. Then I will sign

The F1 season resumes next week at the Singapore Grand Prix, with lights out scheduled for Sunday 2nd October at 11pm AEST.

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F1 News 2022: Christian Horner backs Daniel Ricciardo for vacant Alpine seat

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