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'Ricciardo will replace Raikkonen at Ferrari in 2019'

  • Published on 06 Apr 2018 11:55
  • comments 13
  • By: Bjorn Smit

The 2018 Formula 1 season has just started, but the silly season for 2019 has already kicked off. Three of the six seats at Mercedes, Red Bull and Ferrari will be free following the conclusion of this season if Lewis Hamilton extends his contract at Mercedes. However, it now appears that Daniel Ricciardo will be the key to driver market.

Sebastian Vettel and Max Verstappen have already penned long-term deals at Ferrari and Red Bull respectively, and it is expected that Hamilton will stay on with Mercedes. Ricciardo, Valtteri Bottas and Kimi Raikkonen will be free agents when the current season ends, which means that the three top teams all have a vacant seat. And according to our sources, Ricciardo could be the first to secure a new deal as the 28-year-old appears to be heading to Ferrari in 2019.

‘Deadline Red Bull due in May’

A source in the Bahrain paddock told F1Today.net: "Ferrari has shown interest for some time now and talks with Ricciardo accelerated after the Australian signed a letter of intent at the Scuderia. Ricciardo would love to be a Ferrari driver and he made up his mind. The deal is almost done. If everything goes right, he will sign a multiyear contract soon.”

The transfer to Ferrari means that Ricciardo will leave Red Bull Racing after five seasons: "It is publicly known that Red Bull Racing put up a deadline to Ricciardo for extending his contract. That deadline is due somewhere in May 2018. Ferrari and Ricciardo are probably going to announce their deal soon”, added the source to F1Today.net.

The past months have seen a lot of speculation over Ricciardo’s future. Red Bull wanted to discuss a new contract with the driver, but he wished to hold it off. Ricciardo told the energy-drink team that he wanted to see how the first races of 2018 would pan out before he discussed a future with Red Bull. The earliest time for those talks would be April 2018. Lots of insiders anticipated a situation in which Ricciardo wanted to explore his options outside of Red Bull. That seems the case, as the five-time Grand Prix winner looks to be heading to Ferrari. Previously, Vettel said that he wouldn't mind seeing Ricciardo as his teammate at Ferrari.

Collaboration Red Bull and Ricciardo ends after eleven years

Ricciardo has been a part of the Red Bull family since 2008. Up until 2011, he was a junior driver, before taking on a driver role in Formula 1. The Australian made his Formula 1 debut at Silverstone, halfway through 2011 for HRT. A half year later, Ricciardo moved to Scuderia Toro Rosso, where he raced for two seasons. The 28-year-old was promoted to Red Bull Racing in 2014, replacing Mark Webber. In his first year at the senior team, Ricciardo outperformed Vettel in their only season as teammates at Red Bull.

Ricciardo won five races during his five seasons at Red Bull and he secured another 22 podiums. But now, it looks as though Vettel will again be the teammate of the ‘Honey Badger’, which could deliver a great battle within the team.

Also read: Red Bull boss prepared to 'let Ricciardo go'
Also read: Verstappen wants to keep Ricciardo as teammate
Also read: Ricciardo in no rush to pen new Red Bull deal

Replies (13)

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  • DRS-zone

    Posts: 266

    Rumours are gathering around in the paddock already for weeks. Very interesting move in all the assets; how will his position be at Red Bull for the rest of the year and how will he get along next year in the Ferrari!

    • + 1
    • Apr 6 2018 - 12:35
  • boudy

    Posts: 1,168

    If he does sign for another team he will not be privileged to the latest technology first. I would expect Redbull to put all their effort behind Verstappen.

    • + 2
    • Apr 6 2018 - 15:15
  • Wolfgang

    Posts: 313

    nope. It´s Grosjean who is going to replace Raikkonen. But I'm quite sure Raikkonen is in the red car in 2019.

    • + 0
    • Apr 6 2018 - 17:22
    • fastcat

      Posts: 6

      Now that is something I'd like to see Wolfgang, always felt Grosjean deserved a top team drive.

      • + 0
      • Apr 6 2018 - 18:36
    • Personally I dont. Grosjean is okay, but he isnt top team material, and he is far too inconsistent. If it isnt Ricciardo, then I'd much rather take a gander on Leclerc or Perez, or maybe try to steal Hulk from Renault.

      • + 1
      • Apr 6 2018 - 19:28
    • Alonzo

      Posts: 66

      Drivers Id like to see get a shot at the 2nd Ferrari seat... Ricciardo, Perez, Leclerc. In that order, I do think it will be RIC...

      • + 1
      • Apr 6 2018 - 20:31
  • Why not? He is a good and likable driver, definitely a potential champion if in the correct car. And that grin would scare anyone, especially if its coming from a Ferrari.

    • + 0
    • Apr 6 2018 - 19:29
    • Hepp

      Posts: 200

      @ Calle.ITW "Does your source live on Ecclestone Boulevard 113 in Hogwashham, Bollocks? ;)"
      I'm trying to understand your (collectively) European slang and sarchasm. Slowly catching on.
      To your question... That is the one, in the back, under the rock, under the slug, tou can't miss him!.

      • + 1
      • Apr 6 2018 - 22:47
    • Hahahaha! XD

      Generally, Im pretty poor with written sarchasm (both understanding and writing it myself), so generally I try to exaggerate it or make some smilie or something to sort of show when Im facetious. :)

      • + 0
      • Apr 7 2018 - 07:33
  • Hepp

    Posts: 200

    Let's all believe it after the ink is on the paper.
    I heard that Sergio is moving to Sauber and Kimi will take his place, Toto is replacing Valteri with Suzie, Ross Brawn is the new CEO of Liberty because he has solved all of the problems in F1, all by himself, in one fell swoop.
    What ! , You want my sources ? .... OK, phone 1-800-BERNIE-E

    • + 1
    • Apr 6 2018 - 21:57
    • Does your source live on Ecclestone Boulevard 113 in Hogwashham, Bollocks? ;)

      • + 0
      • Apr 6 2018 - 22:12
  • Hepp

    Posts: 200

    @Calle.ITW , Would you not consider VanDoorne ? for a Ferrari second.

    • + 0
    • Apr 6 2018 - 22:56
    • Vandoorne? I personally wouldnt. While he hasnt performed poorly, I just dont really think he is on e.g Ricciardo's level. That based on the fact that Ricciardo performed well against Vettel, whereas Alonso has steamrolled Vandoorne.

      • + 0
      • Apr 7 2018 - 07:35

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