Will Ricciardo take over De Vries' seat? "The Red Bull family and Ricciardo are open to it" F1

Will Ricciardo take over De Vries' seat? "The Red Bull family and Ricciardo are open to it"

Will Ricciardo take over De Vries' seat? "The Red Bull family and Ricciardo are open to it"

At the end of the year, Daniel Ricciardo chose to sit on the sidelines for a year, even though he could have potentially been a regular driver at Haas. The Australian stated that he only had interest in driving for top teams but now appears to be willing to temporarily drive in the midfield if it offers prospects of a better seat. The link to Nyck de Vries' spot quickly comes to mind.

In an analysis on Formula1.com, journalist and presenter Lawrence Barretto discusses the possibilities for Ricciardo. Barretto understands that The Honey Badger lost his love for the sport after two difficult years at McLaren, and he also acknowledges that Ricciardo was beginning to lose faith in himself. So, Ricciardo chose to return to his old home, Red Bull Racing. "That was the ideal route for the 33-year-old," Barretto believes. "He kept his foot in the door in the Formula 1 world but also got the chance to recharge himself."

Silverstone test important for Ricciardo

Next month, Ricciardo will get his first chance to drive the RB19, giving Helmut Marko the chance to assess what his former driver is still capable of. It seems like an exam for Ricciardo, as Marko indicates that he wants to keep his options open. Normally, a tire test isn't very interesting for a driver, but that's definitely not the case for the eight-time Grand Prix winner.

"After six months, the love for Formula 1 is starting to come back. He's excited again. He wants to race and he wants to win. The most important thing is that he believes he can win," Barretto explains. "But where can he go? By going back to Red Bull, Ricciardo will hope to get a chance at a race seat again, although he didn't publicly express that until last week." In an interview with ESPN, the Australian mentioned that it would be a fairytale ending to his career if he returned to Red Bull.

Will Ricciardo take over De Vries' seat?

That seems possible via a workaround. Sergio Pérez still has a contract for next season but is currently not convincing. Letting Ricciardo take a seat in the Red Bull right away seems risky, but Marko wouldn't be Marko if he wasn't looking for alternatives for the future. Those alternatives are scarce at the moment, so an additional option wouldn't hurt. "According to various sources, a race seat at AlphaTauri is a serious option for him next season," Barretto reports. "Both the Red Bull family and Ricciardo are open to it." It would give Red Bull an ideal chance to test Ricciardo properly.

If that happens, it would essentially be at the expense of De Vries, with Tsunoda and Ricciardo fighting for a possible spot at the main team. "If this indeed happens, Ricciardo will have to prove that he is fully back and then demonstrate that he can quickly feel at home in the car and beat his teammate, thus proving that he deserves another chance at Red Bull. A return of Ricciardo is far from certain, but it seems more likely with each passing day," Barretto concludes.

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