McLaren CEO Confirms Long Term Plan With Daniel Ricciardo Amid O’Ward Takeover Rumors

Published 03/01/2022, 6:16 AM EST
Formula One F1 – Brazilian Grand Prix – Jose Carlos Pace Circuit, Sao Paulo, Brazil – November 11, 2021 McLaren’s Daniel Ricciardo during the press conference FIA/Handout via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS – THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY. NO RESALES. NO ARCHIVES

It looks like there won’t be any change in the McLaren drivers’ lineup anytime soon. The British team just signed a contract extension with Lando Norris until 2025 and Daniel Ricciardo will be with the team till the end of 2023.

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There were reports that IndyCar sensation Pato O’Ward may replace Ricciardo in the future at the Woking-based team. But McLaren CEO Zak Brown denied any such claims, stating that there is no seat available for him just yet.

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We have another couple [of] years with Daniel Ricciardo: McLaren CEO

As reported by Planetf1, O’Ward stunned everyone with his performance in his rookie IndyCar season with Arrow-McLaren SP. He even got himself a drive with the British team at the Young Driver’s test in Abu Dhabi in 2021.

When asked if the Mexican can become a permanent F1 driver with the team, Brown replied in the negative.

“Right now, we don’t have a seat available. Lando is under a very long-term contract, so that seat is done. Daniel, we have another couple [of] years with him,” said Brown.

Formula One F1 – Qatar Grand Prix – Losail International Circuit, Lusail, Qatar – November 21, 2021, McLaren’s Daniel Ricciardo before the race REUTERS/Hamad I Mohammed/Pool

Ricciardo too seemed confident that he would keep his seat with the team. He even mentioned that he can even extend his stay with the team after his contract expires next season.

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“Time isn’t really an issue. We have time. Not that we want it to take five years, but it’s there if we need it. I know Lando did the extension, but I have an option there and I feel quite strongly we are in this together.

“And even though some of the lows last year, I was still really enjoying this McLaren environment and the team, so it’s an environment I want to have success in and thrive in,” said the Aussie driver.

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It would be a travesty to lose a talent like Ricciardo anytime soon. But it would be interesting if the Honey Badger does sign a contract extension with the team next season. Let’s see if Ricciardo can regain his old form in the upcoming 2022 season and prove his mettle once again.

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Devang Chauhan

1560 articles

Devang Chauhan is an F1 author at EssentiallySports. Having completed his graduation in Journalism and Mass Communication, he has a keen eye for writing engaging and detailed articles on F1. Previously a writer for Sports Social's 'Chase Your Sport' Magazine, Devang has been an ardent follower of the sport for over a decade and has attended two editions of the Indian Grand Prix.

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