Ricciardo enjoys time off but stays sharp: ‘I’m always ready to race’

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Daniel Ricciardo is entering the 2023 season with a light-hearted approach, he tells Speedcafe.com. The Australian has switched from McLaren to Red Bull Racing, where he is currently third driver alongside Max Verstappen and Sergio Pérez. Among other things, he speaks about his expectations for the upcoming F1 season, but also about his future.

Ricciardo is determined to make himself as light-hearted as possible next year as he decides for himself what he wants to do with his career. He’s been in a racing car since he was eight, so he says there’s no rush to compete in another league. He will stay close to the premier class now that he has been appointed third driver for Red Bull.

The Australian driver would of course love to be able to race in Formula 1 this year, but is also happy to take it a bit easier. “I’m mainly looking at how I feel and how everything is going this year,” says Ricciardo, indicating that he has to get used to his new life. “It’s always been Formula 1 or nothing for me. When I’m not racing, I want to give myself a rest.’

Ricciardo remains sharp for the time being: ‘I can jump into the car at any time’

He wants to make good use of the free time that Ricciardo has now. “I want to travel across America now, or ride the dirt bike with friends,” says the 33-year-old. ‘That kind of light-hearted, fun stuff gives me a good headspace, and that’s what I’m mainly striving for right now. So it’s more of a light-hearted approach than me working my ass off to race elsewhere outside of F1.”

Knowing that he would not be part of the 2023 grid, Ricciardo was able to enjoy his winter holiday more. Of course, he had known since November that he would be third driver at Red Bull, but he also knew that he would have a less hectic off-season. “It’s very nice to have free time, I could now spend longer with my family in Australia and do little things that you normally never get to,” says the Australian. He does indicate that he is ready to jump into the car, if necessary. ‘I always keep myself busy with my physical condition, my weight will be good. I am always ready and sharp to go racing again.”

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