So that you’re saying there’s an opportunity?
Components One commentator David Croft says he wouldn’t be stunned to see Daniel Ricciardo exchange Sergio Perez and reunite with former teammate Max Verstappen on the 2024 grid.
After being sacked by McLaren with a yr to run on his contract and changed by compatriot Oscar Piastri, Ricciardo returned to Crimson Bull, the place he’ll share reserve driver duties with Liam Lawson this season.
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Ricciardo will attend round eight races this season as he takes a step again from the bodily and psychological calls for of a 23-race calendar.
Perez is contracted with Crimson Bull till the tip of 2024 and it could take a critical capitulation for the Mexican to be given the flick early, given he’s been an ideal foil to Verstappen in his two title-winning seasons.
However there have been indicators of a breakdown between the 2 Crimson Bull drivers final yr when Verstappen refused to let Perez previous him on the Brazilian Grand Prix.
Croft believes something is feasible within the loopy world of F1 and Ricciardo may discover himself again alongside Verstappen if issues go pear-shaped at Crimson Bull this yr.
“By no means say by no means in F1,” Croft advised Kayo Sports activities in an interview to air on Friday evening.
“Extra stunning issues have occurred and it could not shock me to see him and Max line up collectively in 2024.
“Personally I feel it’s such a disgrace he’s not on the grid. If he comes again a greater drive for it then we are going to all agree on the yr off.”
Croft predicts it will likely be a troublesome for Ricciardo to look at the motion from the sidelines this yr, given a path again right into a high F1 crew seems nearly non-existent ought to Perez carry out nicely once more.
“It’s going to be a torturous 2023 for Danny,” the Sky Sports activities commentator stated.
“He says he’s not completed and desires to come back again in F1 however the place does he match? On his day he is without doubt one of the most dynamic and thrilling drivers.
“Ought to he have taken a route at Haas? Did he want a relaxation? Did he have to recharge and discover enthusiasm for all times once more? Solely he can reply that.
“The place does he match if not Crimson Bull? It’s not a high 3 crew, it’s not Alpine, not Aston Martin and never McLaren so the place?
“The most important key to his participation in F1 rests on Sergio and Max’s relationship which hasn’t at all times gone as easily.
“It will likely be fascinating to see how carefully Danny works with Sergio, he should be trying over his shoulder. It’s Sergio’s seat to lose.”
Croft’s co-commentator Martin Brundle believes Ricciardo isn’t a risk to take Perez’s place, and argued the Australian may be higher served racing in a distinct class this yr.
“I don’t assume Sergio feels stress,” Brundle advised Kayo Sports activities.
“He comes with a variety of Mexican assist let’s consider.
“He is an efficient mixture with Max, he’s too skilled, he’s an grownup amongst children typically however I might say this isn’t going to faze him.
“For Daniel, it will likely be fascinating to see what number of races he’s at, it will likely be purgatory for him to be behind the scenes and never racing.
“He should really feel like a spare bottle of champagne at a marriage.
“I’ve seen reserve drivers trying tormented at race weekends as a result of they’re born to race.
“He’s younger sufficient and quick sufficient however he misplaced his manner. I feel he would have been higher ‘doing a Kimi (Raikkonen)’ and going and doing one thing else, rallying, do nothing, however miss it.”
The 2023 F1 season will get underway on the Bahrain Grand Prix at 2am AEDT on Monday.