Daniel Ricciardo says there is 'clarity' over his McLaren future

Daniel Ricciardo says there is ‘clarity’ over his McLaren future after clear-the-air talks with boss Zak Brown – as Australian insists he DOES ‘have the full support of the team’

  • Daniel Ricciardo’s future under scrutiny after a dismal start to the season
  • Australian has finished in the top-10 just once this season, scoring only 11 points
  • McLaren boss Zak Brown warned Ricciardo had not met team’s expectations 
  • Teammate Lando Norris has racked up 48 points and a podium finish 

Daniel Ricciardo believes his future at McLaren is a lot clearer after holding crunch talks with team’s chief executive Zak Brown.

The Australian’s job has come under scrutiny over the past two months, with Ricciardo enduring a dismal start to his second season with McLaren.

The 32-year-old has finished in the top-10 just once in the first seven rounds – when he claimed sixth place at his home Grand Prix – and scored only 11 points.

Daniel Ricciardo says his future is clearer after holding talks with McLaren boss Zak Brown 

Ahead of the Monaco Grand Prix two weeks ago Brown conceded Ricciardo had not met expectations. 

While the former Red Bull driver is under contract with McLaren at the end of next season, Brown also hinted there were ‘mechanisms’ in the Australian’s contract that could see the team moving on from him before the end of 2023.

Speaking before the Azerbaijan GP in Baku this weekend, however, Ricciardo struck a positive tone when discussing his future, revealing he had held clear-the-air talks with the McLaren boss.

‘We’ve spoken, we’ve had a catch-up, but nothing needed to be elaborated on,’ he told the Mirror. 

The Australian has endured a dismal season so far, finishing in the points just twice 

The 32-year-old crashed during the second practice session ahead of the Monaco GP

‘The clarity is there for us moving forward, my contract is clear with the team for next year, I’m fully committed, I’ve certainly voiced that. 

‘Obviously now, it’s [about performing] on track, and showing these moments, these races I know I’m capable of, and I do truly believe I have the full support of the team, and we want to do it together.’ 

Ricciardo has been consistently outscored in all but two races by teammate Lando Norris this season, with the Briton racking up 48 points and a podium finish through the first seven rounds of the championship.

Last month, Brown told Sky Sports McLaren were ‘in no rush’ to make a decision over the Australian’s future but acknowledged he had been regularly outperformed by Norris.

McLaren boss Zak Brown has conceded Ricciardo has not met the team’s expectations

‘Lando definitely has an edge,’ the McLaren CEO said. ‘We obviously would like to see Daniel much closer to Lando and have a good inter-team battle. Daniel is just not comfortable yet with the car. We are trying everything we can.’

The eight-time GP winner insisted he was neither surprised not particularly bothered by the comments, suggesting he ‘become immune to the media’ throughout his career. 

‘I don’t really take it for its full value or worth, and some things are taken out of context, so I’m not really one to go into it, read too much and try and understand it,’ he added.  

‘At the end of the day, I know the facts between us and what I have with the team. Simply, I don’t get caught up. So I guess I’m not surprised with anything these days.’

Ricciardo has regularly been outscored by McLaren’s teammate Lando Norris (left) 

In recent weeks, a number of former F1 stars have warned Ricciardo’s days at McLaren could be numbered. 

On Thursday, Sky F1 analyst Martin Brundle said McLaren had no choice but to move on from their expensive mistake.

‘They can’t take this into 2023,’ Brundle said of Ricciardo’s form and the apparent team disunity. ‘The team is too big and there’s too much at stake,’ he told News Corp.

Earlier this month, 1980 World Champion Alan Jones told the Herald Sun his fellow Australian had to start delivering results swiftly or he’d face the sack.

Sky F1’s analyst Martin Brundle believes Ricciardo needs a big turnaround to survive the chop

While 1980 world champion Alan Jones believes his fellow Australian could lose his job this season, unless he starts delivering results very quickly 

‘Unless he makes a few improvements, quick smart, I really can’t see him being there for too much longer to be honest,’ he said. 

Meanwhile 1997 World Champion Jacques Villeneuve went even further and declared Ricciardo’s time at McLaren was ‘over’ in his column for Formule1.nl.

‘He doesn’t bring in any points and he doesn’t have the speed the team needs to develop the car,’ he wrote. 

‘So he’s just costing them money.’ 

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