Jacques Villenueve has informed Daniel Ricciardo that he is no longer with McLaren and will be’sitting on the couch at home’ soon.
The Australian has had a disappointing time with the team he joined in 2021, with teammate Lando Norris consistently outperforming him, most recently in Monaco.
Prior to the weekend, McLaren boss Zak Brown admitted that Ricciardo has not lived up to expectations, and that the team has an option to terminate his contract, which runs until 2023.
This has put even more pressure on Ricciardo, who had another poor performance in Monte Carlo, where he crashed in practice and finished 13th, while teammate Lando Norris finished sixth and set the fastest lap of the race.
Following a disappointing stint with McLaren, Daniel Ricciardo’s future is surrounded by speculation.
As a result, Villenueve believes Ricciardo’s time at McLaren is coming to an end, writing in his column: “Daniel Ricciardo’s time at McLaren is coming to an end.” It’s a strategy for putting pressure on the driver while also preparing the press. Finally, he was a well-paid driver who incurred significant financial losses for the team.
“He doesn’t score any points, and he lacks the speed that the team requires to further develop the car.” So he’s just a financial drain on them. It would be less expensive to keep paying Ricciardo’s salary, let him sit on the couch at home, and replace him with another driver. It’s a harsh reality, but Formula 1 is like that.”
Ricciardo has already been warned that rumors of a McLaren exit are ‘getting louder’ in the aftermath of the Monaco Grand Prix, with the experienced driver possibly entering his final year on the Formula One grid.
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Daniel Ricciardo finished 13th in Monaco and crashed on Friday during practice.
Since joining HRT in 2011, the former Red Bull and Renault driver has competed in Formula One for over a decade, winning eight times out of over 200 starts.
Ricciardo’s racing career is likely to extend beyond Formula One, as the Australian is a big NASCAR fan who has previously expressed interest in driving in the American series when speaking to Insider earlier this year.
“I’d like to run on a road course or something, but I’d rather walk.” I’ll need to do some testing and see where I stand because it’s such a different discipline. And, if everything went well and I felt confident in the car, I might raise my hand, but I wouldn’t jump to any conclusions. It’s a different animal altogether.”