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'Why's he still in F1?' - Sky pundit brutally DESTROYS Ricciardo’s career

'Why's he still in F1?' - Sky pundit brutally DESTROYS Ricciardo’s career

'Why's he still in F1?' - Sky pundit brutally DESTROYS Ricciardo’s career

'Why's he still in F1?' - Sky pundit brutally DESTROYS Ricciardo’s career

Sky Sports F1 pundit and 1997 world champion Jacques Villeneuve has issued a damning indictment of Daniel Ricciardo’s career as the Australian's poor form continues.

Ricciardo initially made a name for himself as one of the top drivers on the grid in 2014, when he beat reigning quadruple world champion Sebastian Vettel in his first season as the German’s team-mate at Red Bull.

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The 34-year-old racked up a trio of wins that season, and has since added another five to bring his career tally to eight, alongside 32 podiums.

His aggressive driving style and bold overtakes - coupled with a winning smile and personality - established Ricciardo as a favourite amongst peers, pundits, and fans alike. But as his career appears to slide towards an inevitable and painful end, it's now his critics who are the most vocal.

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Jacques Villeneuve blasted Daniel Ricciardo on Sky Sports F1

‘Go home’ - Why is Ricciardo being criticised?

A series of reliability issues and the emergence of a young Max Verstappen pushed Ricciardo to the exit door at Red Bull in 2018, and two impressive years at Renault (now Alpine) meant his stock continued to rise.

In 2021, the Australian signed for McLaren, where he took the team’s first victory since 2012 at the Italian Grand Prix. Aside from that euphoric weekend, though, Ricciardo struggled for pace and was clearly second best to Lando Norris.

It seemed that the McLaren car and Ricciardo were not destined for success together, but Villeneuve was not accepting excuses when he tore into the driver on Sky Sports during the Canadian GP weekend.

“Why is he still in F1? Why?”, asked Villeneuve. “We’re hearing the same thing now for the last four or five years: ‘we have to make the car better for him, poor him'. Sorry, it’s been five years of that, no. You’re in F1.

“Maybe you make that effort for Lewis Hamilton who’s won multiple championships. You don’t make that effort for a driver that can’t cut it. If you can’t cut it, go home, there’s someone else who can take your place.

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“That’s how it’s always been in racing. This is the pinnacle of the sport, there’s no reason to keep going and to keep finding excuses.

“You all talk about that first season or first two seasons,” he continued. “He was beating a Vettel that was burnt out, that was trying to invent things with the car to go win and just making a mess of his weekends and then he was beating - for half a season - Verstappen, when Verstappen was 18 years old, just starting, then that was it. He stopped beating anyone after that.”

Ricciardo now finds himself back in the Red Bull family, but he is driving for Visa Cash App RB, effectively the B team of the group.

There, he is being comfortably out-scored and out-qualified by team-mate Yuki Tsunoda, and both drivers were overlooked when Red Bull opted to extend Sergio Perez’s contract.

“I think it’s his image that has kept him in F1 rather than his actual results,” Villeneuve concluded.

READ MORE: Verstappen reveals F1 FUTURE with Perez contract reaction

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