"I think part of him feels like - I don't want to say [he feels] he's let us down, but we did expect to do better.
"When we chatted last year, there were higher hopes for this year. We're confident next year is going to be a lot better, but he's thinking probably: 'If it doesn't go [better], why would Daniel want to stay?' That's probably where his head's at and that's probably where those comments come from.”
Ricciardo was referring to comments made by team principal Cyril Abiteboul which suggested the recent acquisition of Esteban Ocon was not only to replace Hulkenberg, but perhaps Ricciardo too if the Australian became unhappy at their current lack of competitiveness.
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