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Daniel Ricciardo

Ricciardo confident of McLaren's 'full support' amid speculation over future

Daniel Ricciardo has provided an update on his McLaren contract situation, amid speculation that his days with the team could be numbered.

Daniel Ricciardo has reaffirmed that he is contracted with McLaren until the end of the 2023 season, despite speculation that he could leave the team at the end of the season.

The speculation surrounding Riccardo's future was taken to another level when he was publicly criticised by team boss Zak Brown, who told Sky Sports F1 that the Australian has so far failed to match expectations.

His comments came with the driver 37 points behind younger teammate Lando Norris after just seven rounds of the new season, with Ricciardo having scored just one points finish to Norris' five.

But, amid talk that continued poor performances could see McLaren replace Ricciardo, the 32-year-old says that his contract situation is black and white, and that he has had a "catch-up" with his team boss.

"Well firstly, we've spoken, we've had a catch-up, and there was nothing to elaborate on," he said, speaking to media, including RacingNews365.com.

"I think sometimes, I'm guilty of it as well, we get caught up in the media and not always making total sense of things and I just like to talk.

"The clarity is clear for us moving forward, my contract is clear with the team, to the end of next year, and I'm fully committed. I've certainly voiced that."

Was Ricciardo surprised by Brown's criticism?

Brown's comments appear to have only intensified talk surrounding Ricciardo's future, not lessened it. But was Ricciardo surprised to hear his boss talk so openly about his struggles at McLaren?

"I wasn't surprised," he continued.

"I don't know, maybe I have become a little bit immune, if that's the word, to the media. I think being in the sport for so long, we actually do more and more as we go through the years.

"I know that some things are taken out of context, so I'm not really one to go into it and read too much into it and try and understand it.

"At the end of the day, I know the facts between us and what I have with the team so I don't get caught up. I'm not surprised with anything these days.

"Obviously, now it's about getting on track to show it and show these moments and these races that I know I'm capable of. I do truly believe that I have the full support of the team and we want to do it together."

Ricciardo determined not to get complacent at McLaren

While Ricciardo can celebrate the added protection that his "black and white" contract situation offers him, the Australian is adamant that he will continue to drive as if his career depends on it throughout the remainder of 2022.

When asked by RacingNews365.com whether holding a contract until the end of 2023 could leave him complacent, rather than in a position in which he must fight for his career, he said: "Absolutely not, no.

"There is a level of, as [Sergio] Perez said, that signing early in a season gives you, for sure, some comfort. But that comfort shouldn't be misconstrued with complacency. Absolutely not.

"It's as simple as this: I want my results to be better. I know they can be better. I want to enjoy that success with the team so I'm not going to just sit back in 13th and be complacent or happy about that. So not at all."

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