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Daniel Ricciardo

Ricciardo: AlphaTauri not a 'junior team' anymore

The Italian team has come a long way since it was formerly known as Toro Rosso when Daniel Ricciardo last drove for them in 2013.

Ricciardo  Brazil
To news overview © XPBimages

Daniel Ricciardo believes AlphaTauri is 'not a junior team' anymore, after making his return to the outfit for the first time since 2013.

The Australian was out on the sidelines for the first half of the season, before he was tipped to replace Nyck De Vries after a spate of poor performances.

After returning for two races at Hungary and Belgium, he was back out again for five races after a freak accident injured his hand.

In the final races he picked up points once at Mexico, which helped AlphaTauri finish eighth in the Constructors' Championship. The Australian feels his old team has come a long way since it was formally known as Toro Rosso.

"There's definitely some things we found in the car as the season went on," Ricciardo told media, including RacingNews365.

"Everything I fed back to the team, I feel like they've actioned or done their best to make it happen or make it work.

"I feel like this is not a junior team anymore. We have a lot of plans for next year, hopefully we can prove that on track and get more points."

Ricciardo: AlphaTauri see me as a Red Bull driver

AlphaTauri will undergo a name change for next season, as part of its rebrand and new management which sees Franz Tost leaving after 18 years as Team Principal.

He will be replaced by former FIA Executive, Peter Bayer, and Ferrari's assistant Team Principal, Laurent Mekies, for the 2024 season.

Ricciardo believes the changes will take the team to the next level, as they look to finish more regularly in the points.

"There's a lot in me coming back that's really exciting. There's also a team that is rebuilding, a little bit like how I've kind of done this phase of my career," he added.

"We're all on a similar path and there is a lot of confidence. In Yuki's season he's stepped up a lot and proved himself and I think the team has a lot of faith in me.

"I think they still see me as a Red Bull driver and the results I had and not as a McLaren driver and the results I had, so we're all in a good place."

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