Ricciardo and Yuki Tsunoda represent the most experienced driver line-up the team has employed since its first season as Toro Rosso in 2006. Red Bull’s owners have reaffirmed its commitment to advancing the Faenza structure on the grid under the new management by CEO Peter Bayer and team principal Laurent Mekies.
The new name and title sponsorship package will be revealed in the coming days, when the FIA reveals the official entry list for next year’s Formula 1 World Championship.
“I feel like we’re going in the right direction,” Ricciardo said. “I feel like they acted or did their best to make it happen or to make it work. So, honestly, I can’t ask for much more at the moment. Obviously now it’s just a matter of how quickly we can fit new parts on the car, and so on “.
“I don’t want to be paternalistic, but the mentality is the right one. I feel like we’re all meeting in the right place and looking forward. I think they appreciate the experience I have, and I think that’s very important moving forward, and they’re motivated “.
“I feel like this is no longer a junior team. And I think, with a lot of plans for next year, hopefully we can prove it on the track and get more points, like in the last few races.”
Photo by: Red Bull Content Pool
Daniel Ricciardo, AlphaTauri
Ricciardo is optimistic about the changes the team is undergoing, with new American sponsors forming part of its new identity.
“I feel like for me there’s a lot of things that are falling back into place and it’s really exciting,” he said. “I think there is also a team that is rebuilding itself, a bit like I did at this stage of my career. So we are all on a similar path.”
“I would say there’s a lot of confidence, a lot of confidence. And I think Yuki’s season was very positive and he proved his ability. And I think the team has a lot of confidence in me, and they still see me as a Red Bull driver and the results I got, and not as a McLaren driver and the results I got there. So we’re all in a good position.”
Although the team suffered a defeat against Williams in the fight for seventh place in the 2023 Constructors’ World Championship, Ricciardo says it was not a major blow given their low position in the first half of the year.
“Obviously I wasn’t on board in the first part of the season,” he said. “But the way in which the team has transformed, the updates it has brought, have been positive. And then I like to think that Yuki and I have encouraged each other.”
“So I think the team can be excited for next year. Of course, a seventh place wouldn’t have been bad, but a few races ago there was talk of not finishing tenth. So seventh place would have been a sort of bonus. And it gives us something more to fight for next year.”
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