Red Bull confirm return of Daniel Ricciardo as third driver from McLaren for 2023 Formula 1 season
“The smile says it all, I’m truly excited to be coming back home to Oracle Red Bull Racing as their third driver in 2023," Daniel Ricciardo has said ahead of his return to the team next year. Ricciardo has left McLaren and will aid Red Bull with testing and simulator work, while also using his reserve status to "recharge and refocus" after a run of just one GP win in the last four years.
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And after just over a decade in F1 - in which the 33-year-old spent four seasons with Red Bull between 2014 and 2017 - Ricciardo has seemed ready for a different challenge, and he says the non-grid role with Red Bull will allow him time to "recharge and refocus", while also helping with testing, simulator and commercial activities.
As part of Red Bull's statement announcing his return, Ricciardo said: “The smile says it all, I’m truly excited to be coming back home to Oracle Red Bull Racing as their third driver in 2023.
"I already have so many fond memories of my time here, but the welcome from [boss] Christian [Horner], Dr [Helmut] Marko and the entire team is something I’m sincerely appreciative of.
"For me personally, the ability to contribute to and be surrounded by the best team in F1 is hugely appealing, whilst also giving me some time to recharge and refocus.
"I can’t wait to be with the team and support with simulator work, testing sessions and commercial activities. Let’s go!”
Horner added: “It is great to bring Daniel back in to the Red Bull family.
Race winner Daniel Ricciardo of Australia and Red Bull Racing celebrates in the swimming pool of the Red Bull Energy Station after the Monaco Formula One Grand Prix at Circuit de Monaco on May 27, 2018 in Monte-Carlo, Monaco.
Image credit: Getty Images
"He has enormous talent and such a brilliant character; I know the whole factory is excited to be welcoming him home.
"In his role as test and third driver, Daniel will give us the chance to diversify, assisting in the development of the car, aiding the team with his experience and knowledge of what it takes to succeed in F1.
"We’re very pleased to be working with Daniel again and look forward to everything he will bring to the Team in 2023.”
Ricciardo's best finishes in a F1 season were with Red Bull, coming third in the drivers' championship in both 2014 and 2016.
He joined Renault in 2019 where he spent two seasons, before moving to McLaren in 2021.