Published: Mon, August 27, 2018
Sports | By Phillip Butler

Never say never as Alonso refuses to close door on F1

Never say never as Alonso refuses to close door on F1

Ricciardo blindsided the F1 community earlier this month by revealing he would be partnering Nico Hulkenberg at Renault in 2019 rather than staying at Red Bull to drive alongside Max Verstappen.

He will be replaced in 2019 by Frenchman Pierre Gasly, who has been promoted from Red Bull's junior team Toro Rosso.

Asked if the team in question was Red Bull, he replied: "Yes". "On the Indy 500, I felt competitive past year and there are other series that can put you in a different level in motorsport".

Instead he signed with Renault the following day and began telling Red Bull colleagues on Friday (AEST) when the story broke.

"I think that's what Red Bull is working on at the moment and I'm confident that they can deliver a vehicle which is capable of winning every race, we just need the whole package".

"I guess I got to a point where I felt I was ready for a change, that was the long and short of it, I was ready for a new challenge, for me personally some fresh motivation. If he wanted a change of scenery I'm not sure it's the best scenery to go to".

"But it was the best I could do so I called Christian (Horner)".

"What I appreciate is the fact that Daniel has his position, his agenda, his situation, which I don't want to comment on", Abiteboul told Autosport.

Helmut Marko, Red Bull's motorsport advisor, also recently said that Alonso's "demands were very tedious" when talks were actually held with him a decade ago, and accused the Spaniard of turning his teams into "a one-man show".

So in a way it's kind of easier to be frustrated and I guess in a way 'if we're not fighting for a title will I become more frustrated within myself?' So I felt it was time to make the change for myself and move on, so we'll see how it goes.

Alonso has famously made a series of poor career decisions, including turning down a chance to join Red Bull in time for their domination of the early 2010s, and leaving Ferrari at the end of 2014 believing they would never produce a competitive auto.

Ricciardo added in the Thursday press conference: There was no bad blood or falling out with anyone with the team, with the bosses or anyone at all. "I think Honda is progressing".

"I've been pretty stressed all year, and now life feels pretty stress-free".

"I'm maybe perceived as someone who is a friendly guy who wouldn't push back and make a big decision".

Ricciardo made his final decision during a 10 hour flight across the Atlantic to Los Angeles. "It was not the case for me to join this adventure", said Alonso.

"So I just continued to enjoy my holidays, that time I was in Greece". "I just started speaking to Yamamoto about that". Second, I don't think we were the highest bidder in obtaining Daniel, without going into details.

Perhaps, with Max Verstappen signed up till 2020, Ricciardo sensed that Red Bull was gravitating towards the young Dutchman.

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