'Uncomfortable' McLaren Sacking Was 'Blessing In Disguise' Says Ricciardo

F1
by Adam OndrikSaturday, 27 January 2024 at 05:00
ricciardo daniel aphatauri rbcp31
Daniel Ricciardo reflected on his McLaren sacking as a blessing in disguise after the end of the season 2023.
Daniel Ricciardo was long considered one of the best drivers in F1 before joining McLaren at the start of the 2021 season.
His contract with the Papaya team was supposed to last until the end of the 2023 season, but due to insufficient performances compared to his teammate Lando Norris, it was canceled after the 2022 season.
Suddenly, the Honey Badger wasn't able to get himself a seat in one of the top teams anymore, so he found himself outside of F1 at the beginning of the 2023 season.
The CEO of McLaren, Zak Brown, remembered the situation in a recent podcast when he said, "Breaking up with Daniel was very difficult."
It was a situation that just didn't work out for both parties as they imagined it would. However, Daniel Ricciardo told motorsport.com that he sees it more as a "blessing in disguise" after a year.

"Look, as uncomfortable at times the McLaren situation was, it was a blessing in disguise. Let's say they canceled my contract because I needed to step away to kind of re-find myself, re-find my love, and get the hunger back as well."

Ricciardo had some time off from the World of F1 for a while before returning to AlphaTauri. The 34-year-old asserted he needed a bit of a break to find his drive.

"I think there were a lot of elements that had just been a little bit hurt or bruised from it all, like my drive and my motivation. So, I just needed to find that again and that time away gave that to me."