Australian F1 driver Daniel Ricciardo announced in August that he and his F1 team, McLaren Racing have mutually agreed to terminate their contract after the end of the 2022 season (one year before it was supposed to end). He will be replaced by countrymen Oscar Piastri. This means that Ricciardo will have to find a new destination if he is thinking to continue in Formula 1.
The Australian is also well-aware that he needs to come out with options at the earliest and he already has two of them on his mind. And both of them will require him to continue in F1 and not switch to another category. In fact, Ricciardo has completely ruled out the possibility of switching knowing that this will close the door for him in F1. He also clarified that he loves other disciplines but just can’t see himself there.
"My headspace is in the same space," the 33-year-old told media ahead of the Japanese Grand Prix. “I'm still keen to be part of F1. Of course, Plan A will be to be on the grid, so nothing's changed. But as I said, I don't want to just jump at the first seat available. I know the landscape probably changes as well [at the] end of next year, with contracts and whatever."
When asked whether his decision will perhaps be between taking a reserve driver role with a leading team or racing with another outfit on the grid, Ricciardo agreed that this was the case, and stressed that he is keen to remain in F1 rather than pursue other areas of motorsport.
"That's the two, I would say, realistic options," he explained. [My goal is] not to be anywhere else [other than Formula 1]. I love other disciplines of motorsport, but I don't see myself there. I feel as well [that if] I jump into something like that, then it closes the door in F1. It kind of feels like I've checked out, and I haven't, so I'm solely focused on F1."