Daniel Riccardo’s next adventure after McLaren? 

Ever since Daniel Ricciardo’s exit from Red Bull after the 2018 season, there has been constant uncertainty regarding his future in the sport. The eight-time race winner moved to Renault after four years at Red Bull. However, after only two seasons with the team, he decided to move to McLaren. His exit from Red Bull is still very much debated due to his lack of consistency after. In the 2020 season, he had two podium finishes with Renault and finished 8th in the championship standings. After joining McLaren in 2021, he won the Italian Grand Prix. As we approach the summer break for the 2022 season, he is yet to have a podium finish.

What is going on between McLaren and Riccardo?

His poor run in the 2022 season so far has raised quite a few questions surrounding his future in both Formula One and McLaren. He put the rumours to rest with a statement on his social media accounts stating that he is “committed to McLaren until the end of next year” and is “not walking away from the sport”.

Image Credits : Republic World

However, there continues to be speculation regarding where the honey badger is headed next. The most viable option would be to continue in McLaren, given the duration of his contract, along with the fact that with half of the season still left, he can still aim to turn things around. Ricciardo recently spoke to Express Sports discussing his plans for the rest of the season. He intends to get a top-6 finish in the remaining 11 races. While he expressed that the car hasn’t shown “strong signs” pointing towards a win this year so far, he aims to get higher up the grid with consistent performances.

The Australian driver moving to a different format of racing while still continuing with McLaren would be one possibility. A move to McLaren’s IndyCar team Arrow McLaren SP or even to Formula E with Neon McLaren would give him a chance to rejuvenate his racing career and also allow him to not completely sever ties with McLaren.

But the question remains: if not McLaren, where?

As far as Formula 1 is concerned, he could possibly move to Aston Martin. With the possibility of Sebastian Vettel not renewing his contract post this season, the team will look to fill in the gap. This partnership will probably be a golden opportunity for both Daniel Ricciardo and Aston Martin. Another team which might have a place for him would be Alfa Romeo. Valterri Bottas has done quite well in the current season and has put up a good fight with the midfield cars, on occasion has even surprised many with contests with his former team Mercedes.

However, the team’s second driver Zhou Guanyu, who has a one-year deal with the team, has not performed as good as one would’ve anticipated. Not renewing the contract would have both positive and negative sides for Alfa Romeo. The negative would be the loss of Chinese sponsors for the team, which can, however, be taken care of with the sponsors the Australian will bring in. This will also give the team two strong drivers and, in turn, also push both the drivers to give their absolute best as a result of the contest between two talented drivers.

He races next in Circuit Paul Richard in the French Grand Prix this weekend and is looking to garner positive results for the team. As it stands, Daniel Ricciardo is yet to give up hope and believes he can make his way towards redemption. Stay tuned at TheSportsway for more updates.

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