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Formula 1

Red Bull boss Helmut Marko has had a sly dig at Daniel Ricciardo

Since leaving Red Bull, Daniel Ricciardo’s career has stagnated, and a team owner recently made a subtle jab at the Australian for quitting the F1 powerhouses. Helmut Marko, the head of Formula One, bemoaned Daniel Ricciardo’s departure from Red Bull, calling it a “sliding doors” moment in his professional life. At Red Bull for five seasons, Ricciardo twice placed third in the drivers’ championship. Before leaving the team to join Renault for two seasons and then go to McLaren last year, the Australian collected seven of his eight career victories there. On Kayo, you can watch every practice, qualifying session, and race of the FIA Formula One World ChampionshipTM in 2022 live. New to Kayo? Start your trial today for free. In a disappointing season thus far, Ricciardo sits 12th in the standings and has only achieved three top-10 finishes. When Ricciardo was a Red Bull driver, according to Marko, the team’s advisor and director of the junior development program, he was a gifted driver. The 79-year-old described Ricciardo as “a happy, natural talent with great car handling” in an interview with the Red Bull Bulletin. Daniel immediately starts driving quickly after getting into the car, Marko recounted. He defeated Sebastian Vettel in his maiden season with Red Bull Racing by a margin of three victories to zero. Daniel used to be like any other fun-loving driver, but he also has a serious side. As tensions between the colleagues increased on the track, reigning world champion Max Verstappen joined Red Bull in 2016. He soon began to challenge Daniel Ricciardo. The pair collided at the 2018 Azerbaijan Grand Prix, which turned out to be the catalyst for Ricciardo’s departure at the end of that season. Marko regrets that Ricciardo didn’t stay at Red Bull for a longer period of time to continue the battle with Verstappen, believing it to be a “crunch point” in Ricciardo’s career. He claimed that the debut of Max was a turning moment in his career. “He preferred to maintain his distance rather than engage in combat. You already know what occurred next. What a shame! Always a pleasure to deal with, Max’s speed is equivalent to his own, but Max’s consistency is superior. Marko’s remarks reaffirm those of Red Bull team president Christian Horner, who said in 2019 that Ricciardo left Red Bull in order to “escape from a fight” with Verstappen. David Croft, an F1 analyst, recently stated that he is still perplexed by Ricciardo’s choice to quit his former team and that his career has since been on a downhill slope. This week, Ricciardo was questioned about whether the fabledly direct Marko had ever expressed much resentment at him for leaving Red Bull. “Helmut gave me a lot of sh*t throughout the years, so (we) didn’t need to sit down. After I departed, there was no need for it anymore,” he claimed. Although I connect with Helmut less frequently these days, I would say that the two of us still have a close friendship. My adoration or respect for the man hasn’t altered; it’s very honest and very Helmut. He’s a decent man. No “I told you so” here. That’s a component of sport. And now we’ll continue. Ricciardo openly affirmed last week that he will be staying with McLaren at least until the end of the 2023 season, when his contract expires, despite rumors concerning his future in Formula 1. At the French Grand Prix on Sunday at 11 p.m., the F1 season will resume (AEST). See related readings: Robert Ricciardo