Daniel Ricciardo’s move away from Red Bull was one of the most talked about stories post last season’s summer break.
All through the season, the talk from the Red Bull camp was that Ricciardo was going to extend his contract with the team and stay put at Red Bull.
Helmut Marko and co. had even confirmed that Ricciardo did not really have a choice, as Ferrari and Mercedes had their teams sorted.
Ricciardo, however, decided to move on from Red Bull, and ended up at Renault, forced to settle for a midfield team, as a Ferrari or Mercedes seat wasn’t available.
🗣️ "I did expect more out of that, and at the time I think rightly so."
Daniel Ricciardo speaks candidly to @NataliePinkham about missing out on moves to Mercedes and Ferrari, and some "conservative" decisions
— Sky Sports F1 (@SkySportsF1) February 8, 2019
In an interview with Nathalie Pinkman from Sky Sports, Ricciardo admitted that he was frustrated that neither of the top two teams were interested in acquiring his services, especially at a time when he had won 2 of the first 6 races.
“Yes – to answer it bluntly,” said Ricciardo, speaking about being frustrated in the Sky Sports interview.
“At the end of the day in the next 12 months I still think, and everybody would say this, that Mercedes and Ferrari are going to be the teams to beat.
“Maybe other teams could take a win here or there, but I think they’re still the teams to be with short term.” he added.
Ricciardo felt like he had some bargaining power, but that wasn’t quite true when he actually began conversation with both the top teams.
“Especially after the first six races,” he said.
“I won two out of six, so it was Seb [Vettel], Lewis and me who had won two each. At that stage no one else was really touching us.
“I felt like my pull, so to speak, couldn’t have been any higher. In a way, I did expect probably more out of that, and at the time I think rightly so.” he added.
Now, while Ricciardo respected how Ferrari dealt with the entire situation, snubbing Ricciardo for someone from their academy, he did not quite like how Mercedes went about their business.
He’s a young up and coming prospect, and maybe that was part of their plan all along, regardless of what my results were and what his results were,” he explained.
“With what Ferrari have done, I see it and I respect that because I’ve seen Red Bull do it, bringing the young kids through the programme. In a way, I think it’s about time.” the Aussie said
The Australian called out Mercedes for being a little too conservative with their approach. However, he later highlighted that that conservative approach had been working for them.
“I guess the Mercedes one is probably a bit of a different situation,” he said.
“It’s a slightly different dynamic with the path they’ve chosen.
“I guess for them it’s more conservative, but I can’t argue because it’s worked.
“Lewis has won Drivers’ Championships and the team has won Constructors’ Championships, so in a way they’ve ticked all the boxes they need.” he concluded.
Do you think Ricciardo deserved a chance at Ferrari or Mercedes?