Red Bull Formula 1 chief Christian Horner hopes the “dark cloud” currently following Daniel Ricciardo will lift for his final two races with the team after the Australian driver suffered a frustrating retirement late in Sunday’s Mexican Grand Prix.

After qualifying on pole, Ricciardo had been on course to finish second in Mexico behind teammate Max Verstappen, only to suffer an engine failure with 10 laps remaining.

Ricciardo was forced to park up and retire from the race, ending his hopes of scoring a first podium finish since he won the Monaco Grand Prix back in May.

Renault Vs Red Bull

Ricciardo said after the race that he felt “helpless” and was “done” with the Red Bull RB14 car after his eighth retirement of the year, but Horner felt the driver was speaking in the heat of the moment.

“He’s just had an immensely frustrating afternoon. You can understand his emotions are running incredibly high,” Horner said.

“It’s gutting not just for him but for the whole team because we were looking at potentially a one-two finish which has enormous value to us.

“It feels a bittersweet victory in that it is fantastic for Max to have driven an outstanding race - absolutely outstanding race, but I’m pretty confident that Daniel would have been able to hold off Sebastian [Vettel] over those remaining laps.

“You can understand his frustration, and hope that this dark cloud that is following him around lifts for the final two races.”

Asked if he had spoken with Ricciardo, Horner said: “He wanted to get out of the circuit pretty quickly as you can imagine, so we’ll speak a bit later when things have calmed down.”

Ricciardo will make his final appearance for Red Bull in Abu Dhabi at the end of November, having agreed to sign for Renault in 2019.