Daniel Ricciardo says he panicked at first after losing his McLaren seat, but realized he wanted to relax after a while.
Ricciardo, who both ended his contract with McLaren after two difficult years, preferred to sit out and rest for a year rather than stay in F1 with a weak team.
It was also known that Ricciardo, who aimed to return to F1 in the 2024 season, did not want to waste this time; So the Australian driver accepted the reserve offer of his former team Red Bull.
Returning to the paddock for the first time last week, Ricciardo said: “It was definitely not in my mind to go back to Red Bull at first.”
“After I lost my seat, I was just scared, thinking ‘oh my god, what am I going to do now, what’s next’. I was taken aback and a bit surprised.”
“I think after one month I started talking to other teams. But deep down I didn’t know what I wanted to do.”
“I was thinking to myself, ‘Am I doing this to stay on the grid, is that what I really want?’ As I gained more confidence, I realized that I wanted to take a year off.
“Red Bull was the perfect place for this transition period and everything went very quickly. Both sides knew it would be a smart partnership.” say.