‘The first I’ve heard’ - Ricciardo didn’t know McLaren signed Piastri on July 4

Daniel Ricciardo says he was not aware that McLaren had signed Oscar Piastri to replace him for the 2023 F1 season a week before he reaffirmed his commitment to the team. 
Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) McLare
Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) McLare

Piastri’s move to McLaren from next season was officially confirmed on Friday ahead of the Dutch Grand Prix after F1’s Contract Recognition Board (CRB) ruled his contract to race with the Woking team was valid. 

The decision settled the despute between McLaren and Alpine over Piastri’s services, with Alpine losing their appeal to the CRB after the reigning F2 champion rejected their claim he would drive for them in 2023

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The CRB’s verdict revealed that Piastri had signed a two-year deal with McLaren on July 4, nine days before Ricciardo issued a statement insisting he was “not walking away” from the team or F1. 

Ahead of last weekend’s Belgian Grand Prix it was announced that Ricciardo and McLaren had “mutually agreed” to split at the end of the season. 

Ricciardo said at Zandvoort that he did know McLaren had already signed Piastri when he posted his July 13 statement on social media. 

“To be honest on the dates, that’s the first I’ve heard,” Ricciardo told Sky.

“I’m not aware of obviously timelines and what the team is discussing. 

“To be honest, before that date, for months, we were already discussing - not my future - but where we could improve in order to have a better future with the team. 

"So I’m aware there was going to be talks ongoing. I guess what the team does preparing Oscar, that’s also not my business in terms of what day they spoke. 

“If that’s the case, then so be it, it’s not really my decision to make.” 

(L to R): Oscar Piastri (AUS) Alpine F1 Team Reserve Driver and Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) McLaren. Formula 1 World
(L to R): Oscar Piastri (AUS) Alpine F1 Team Reserve Driver and Daniel…

McLaren team principal Andreas Seidl was questioned about the timing of the team’s deal with Piastri during a media briefing on Friday evening. 

Asked if McLaren had treated Ricciardo with transparency throughout, Seidl replied: “Obviously we don’t go into the details of the contract that we signed with Oscar. 

“Regarding Daniel, as we have communicated last week, I think throughout this year Daniel, Zak and myself had an open and transparent dialogue at any time of where we both are. 

“Therefore, there is no issue in that aspect.” 

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