Alpine admit they spoke to Ricciardo - and reveal why they opted against him

Alpine have admitted they did speak to Daniel Ricciardo about signing him before they approached Pierre Gasly.

Gasly will be in the F1 2023 driver line-up with Alpine after opting to leave AlphaTauri.

Ricciardo, whose contract is being terminated early by McLaren, has admitted he won’t be on the F1 2023 grid but Alpine have conceded that a link-up was discussed.

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“At the beginning we discussed with a few drivers, including Daniel,” Alpine team principal Otmar Szafnauer said.

Ricciardo represented the French team when they were known as Renault.

Alpine were in need of a new driver for next season when Fernando Alonso announced he would leave to join Aston Martin as a replacement for the retiring Sebastian Vettel.

“We had a seat available around the summer break, and then we started looking around as to who would be [the] best fit, and we had some criteria to work to,” Szafnauer said.

Pierre Gasly (FRA) AlphaTauri on the drivers parade. Formula 1 World Championship, Rd 18, Japanese Grand Prix, Suzuka,
Pierre Gasly (FRA) AlphaTauri on the drivers parade. Formula 1 World…

“The three things we wanted were natural speed, a fast driver; one with experience; and also youth at the same time. 

“Adding all three things up, there aren’t many people that have all that, and Pierre definitely does.

“Pierre meets the criteria that I said to a tee. He’s experienced, fast and young, so when it became evident that Pierre was a possibility, we made our shortlist even shorter.”

Gasly will team with Esteban Ocon next year.

“They’ve known each other for a very long time and they’ve raced together,” Szafnauer said.

“They’re about equally experienced, they’re both very fast and both ambitious, so I think they’ll work well together.”

Gasly is currently 13th in the F1 standings, Ricciardo is 12th.

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