McLaren CEO Zak Brown says Daniel Ricciardo remains focused on F1 for 2023, even though the Australian will have to find a new drive. It was confirmed on Wednesday that Ricciardo would leave McLaren at the end of 2022, following weeks of speculation about his future. A McLaren statement revealed that both sides had mutually agreed to terminate Ricciardo's 2023 contract, ending the Australian's spell with the Woking-based squad a year earlier than planned. In addition to its F1 outfit, McLaren also runs teams in IndyCar and Extreme E, and is set to join Formula E for the upcoming 2022/23 season. But though Brown said McLaren would happily consider a role for Ricciardo within one of their other teams, the CEO added that he felt Ricciardo was focused on securing another drive in F1 for next year. "We are Daniel Ricciardo fans, and we do have other racing activities [in other series], and if that was something that was of interest to Daniel, we would welcome those conversations. But I believe he's very focused on Formula 1 at the moment," Brown told media including RacingNews365.com .
A disappointing 2022 for Ricciardo
Ricciardo joined McLaren at the start of 2021, a year in which his main highlight was winning the Italian Grand Prix in a 1-2 with teammate Lando Norris. However, the Australian has struggled badly in 2022, with just 19 points to Norris' 76, and his poor performances gave rise to speculation that he would soon be on his way out of McLaren. With several F1 teams having already confirmed their driver lineups for 2023, Ricciardo's best chance of a competitive drive would appear to lie with Alpine, who need a replacement for Fernando Alonso, and for whom Ricciardo drove in 2019 and 2020 in the team's previous guise of Renault.