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McLaren hint at Ricciardo contract talks

McLaren hint at Ricciardo contract talks

F1 News

McLaren hint at Ricciardo contract talks

McLaren hint at Ricciardo contract talks

McLaren CEO Zak Brown has hinted talks over an extension to Daniel Ricciardo's stay with the team will come at the end of the current season but insisted "there is no rush".

The Australian joined the Woking-based outfit last year and despite getting off to a slow start he was able to clinch his first victory since 2018 at the Italian Grand Prix, heading home team-mate Lando Norris in a one-two finish.

Norris was handed a new contract at the beginning of this term which commits the British driver to the team for the next four years.

But whilst Ricciardo's stock is high, McLaren also has interest in its IndyCar driver Patricio [Pato] O'Ward and Andretti Autosports star Colton Herta, with both slated for tests this year.

Asked by F1 Nation when Ricciardo's long-term future would be put in place, Brown replied: "Probably later this year. We have another year together.

"We do like to think long-out, hence doing some testing with Pato, doing some testing with Colton, we have got Ugo [Ugochukwu] in Formula 4 who put it on pole in his first race so I don't think you can ever plan too early but there is no rush."

Ricciardo still not "10-out-of-10" with McLaren

Ricciardo's first season with McLaren was a slow burner, with the former Red Bull and Renault driver struggling to adapt to the MCL35M.

Yet whilst his own performance has seemingly improved, Ricciardo has scored only once in four races, with a mechanical failure in Saudi Arabia and his own mistake at Imola taking him out of the top 10.

"His race days have been very strong, much better in qualifying," added Brown.

"Listening to him earlier this week with the team, he still doesn't feel he is 10-out-of-10 on top of the car but he has got a great relationship with Lando.

"He knows the team well, it was great he was able to go back to Australia for the first time in a couple of years and recharge the batteries and see the family.

"We are really happy to see Daniel on top of his game."

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