Daniel Ricciardo and McLaren have agreed to split ways at the end of the 2022 Formula 1 season, bringing the end to their contract a year earlier, the team and drive announced today.
The British F1 team Tweeted: “McLaren Racing and Daniel Ricciardo have mutually agreed that Daniel will leave the team at the end of the 2022 Formula 1 season.
“The team thanks Daniel for his dedication and contribution, including that memorable win in Monza. We look forward to finishing the season strongly together.”
As F1 sets up tent at Spa-Francorchamps the 2023 driver line-up Silly Season is in full swing. Triggered last month by Sebastian Vettel’s retirement announcement and almost instant news that Fernando Alonso ditched Alpine for Aston Martin.
With highly rated and equally highly hyped Oscar Piastri expected to fill for the veteran Spaniard at Alpine until he made it known that McLaren was going to be his team upon the ejection of underperforming Ricciardo, one Australian swapped for another at Woking.
Ricciardo: It’s been a privilege to be a part of the McLaren
While Piastri has yet to be confirmed he might well be the next domino to be placed while 33-year-old Ricciardo hinted at wanting to stay in F1: “I’ve never been more motivated to compete and be a part of a sport that I love so much and look forward to what comes next.”
Ricciardo added in his own video Tweet: “It’s been a privilege to be a part of the McLaren Racing family for the last two seasons but following several months of discussions with Zak and Andreas we have decided to terminate my contract with the team early and agree to mutually part ways at the end of this season.
“I’ve enjoyed working with everyone at McLaren both trackside and back in Woking and will be giving my all on and off track as we enjoy the remainder of the season together.
“I’ll be announcing my own future plans in due course but regardless of what this next chapter brings, I have no regrets and am proud of the effort and work I gave McLaren, especially the win in Monza, last season,” added Ricciardo.
Team boss Andreas Seidl said: “I would like to thank Daniel for his dedication and contribution over the last two seasons so far. Despite the shared challenges, he has always turned up with a fighting spirit and positivity and helped the entire team to always keep pushing forward.
“We will never forget that memorable race win in Monza which was a great boost for the whole team. We still have an important battle in the Constructors’ Championship ahead of us for the remainder of the season and we look forward to battle this out with Daniel and Lando.”
McLaren CEO Zak Brown added on behalf of the team: “Daniel has been a great addition to McLaren, and it’s been a pleasure working with him. I’d like to thank him for all of his efforts over the last two seasons both trackside and back at base.
“It’s no secret that we hoped we could achieve more together but seeing him stand on the top step of the podium as a McLaren driver was a highlight. We wish him well for the future and let’s go enjoy the rest of the season together.”
Meanwhile, all seems amicable suggesting money changed hands but no details of the ‘Let Go Clause’ were revealed as yet, but prior to today’s announcement, word was that Ricciardo was seeking anything between $20-million and $30-million compensation from McLaren to walk away early, as he has done.