The siily-season is launched! For 2021, Daniel Ricciardo will drive to McLaren. The Australian driver, who has been with Renault since last year, will join McLaren to replace a certain … Carlos Sainz, expected to replace Vettel at Ferrari.
The Australian did not last long at Renault, where he had been recruited at a high price. Unhappy with the lack of performance of his car, the Australian goes to McLaren who will have, next year, the Mercedes engine, the one that has dominated F1 since 2014.
Ricciardo, 30, from Perth, Australia, will join Briton Lando Norris, 20, who will be in his third season with McLaren in 2021. Carlos Sainz will leave the team after two years with McLaren, possibly for Ferrari.
Zak Brown, CEO of McLaren Racing, said:
The signing of Daniel is another step in our long-term plan and will bring an exciting new dimension to the team, alongside Lando. This is good news for our team, our partners and of course our fans. I also want to pay tribute to Carlos for the great work he has done for McLaren in helping our performance recovery plan. He is a true team player and we wish him well for his future beyond McLaren.
Andreas Seidl, Team Principal, McLaren F1, also commented:
Daniel is a proven race winner and his experience, commitment and energy will be a great asset to McLaren and our mission to get back in the lead. With Daniel and Lando as teammates, I believe we have two runners who will continue to excite our fans and help the team grow. Carlos is a true professional, it is a pleasure to work with him and we will continue to enjoy running with him this year. We all wish him well for the next phase of his career when he leaves McLaren.
On the Renault side, Cyril Abiteboul also reacted.
In our sport, and especially in the extraordinary situation today, mutual trust, unity and commitment are more than ever essential values for a business team. I am confident that the 2020 season will allow us to achieve even more together. Our ambitions remain unchanged.