The F1 fraternity woke up today to the news of McLaren trying to lure Ricciardo from next season by presenting him with a bumper offer.
Ricciardo’s Red Bull deal runs out at the end of the year and he has conceded that he will be looking to stay or move to a team that will in all probability be his last team in F1.
He also expressed his desire to play for a title challenging team as he doesn’t have a lot of years left in Formula 1.
Responding to that McLaren ‘bait’, Ricciardo has said that there is some appeal to a move to McLaren or even Renault, teams that he could help rise to the top of the F1 charts, something very similar to what Hamilton has done with Mercedes. \
“I’m not going to say ‘no, it doesn’t interest me at all’,” Hamilton said.
“Probably more ’cause [of] what Lewis was able to do with Mercedes.
“And I know that, if you’re saying those two teams, they’re not quite in that position yet – but could they be? Maybe.
“The thought of that, it has some appeal. I wouldn’t say it’s probably top of my list right now, but I wouldn’t dismiss it, also.
“Obviously McLaren and Renault aren’t there [out front] today, but maybe they will be there in a year or three years’ time.” he added.
Ricciardo is not afraid of going down the Hamilton road, as the Brit moved from McLaren to Mercedes in 2013, a move that didn’t quite make sense to a lot of F1 pundits.
However, that move paid rich dividends for both Hamilton and Mercedes as they have largely dominated F1 for the last few years.
“Lewis pulled the trigger pretty well,” Ricciardo said.
“Whether he fluked it – he says that he really knew it was going to happen, I don’t know.
“Obviously he’s done well for himself with that move. So, whether it’s just a fantasy for everyone else, I don’t know, but at least there’s a little bit of proof that something like that could potentially happen again.” he added.
Ricciardo confirmed that there wasn’t anything definite from McLaren until now but yes there has been some kind of interest.
“I’ll be honest, obviously, everyone’s talking about Mercedes and Ferrari for potential places for me to go, but I’m aware that there’s obviously going to be interest from other teams, and I guess McLaren is probably one of them,” he said.
“Probably depends as well on what Fernando [Alonso] does, if he stays, if he goes. If he does go, then I guess, yeah, they’d probably want someone, a more experienced driver to come in.
“I guess we’ll see. There’s a lot of things to weigh up right now, but nothing really further to comment on that.” he added
There has been a lot of speculation about Ricciardo moving either to Ferrari or Mercedes next season especially after Red Bull’s new deal with Honda. But it would be fun to see the Australian ply his trade at one of the mid field teams and take them higher up the ranks.