Daniel Ricciardo’s career has been highly unpredictable in the last eighteen months. His recent comeback with AlphaTauri is one of many surprises that has seen the Australian captivate F1 news outlets and fans alike.
At roughly this stage lst season, Ricciardo released a statement on social media to reaffirm his commitment to McLaren amidst persistent transfer rumours.
Only a few weeks later, it became clear that Oscar Piastri has been selected by the Woking squad as his replacement for 2023.
When combining this context with the 34-year-old’s difficult spell at McLaren, is is understandable that he decided against signing for a team over the winter break.
With highly limited options in the market, and an outspoken desire to race with a top team, Ricciardo made his conditions for an F1 return clear.
Few could have predicted the 8-time race winner would replace Nyck de Vries after round 10 of the season, but a re-energised Ricciardo quickly impressed Red Bull at a Silverstone test.
Speaking to Autosport, the Australian admitted the role Fernando Alonso played in his F1 break:
“Actually, I remember having a conversation with Fernando, maybe two years ago now. I wasn’t thinking of taking a break.