The hearts of the Aussie fans sunk further as Daniel Ricciardo lost out on another possible seat for the 2023 F1 Grid. Alfa Romeo announced that Guanyu Zhou has signed an extension with the team and will be driving for the Hinwil-based squad next season. In an anticipated announcement that was teased last week, Alfa Romeo, in a social media post said,
“Alfa Romeo F1 Team ORLEN and Zhou Guanyu: the journey continues! The Shanghai tiger keeps on roaring…”
Guanyu Zhou, the Chinese rookie, was also elated with the news as he tweeted,
“It’s been an absolutely crazy year but I’m proud of everything we have achieved as a team so far! Let’s keep working to reach more milestones together.”
In the team’s press release, the Alfa Romeo team principal said that he was impressed with the learning curve of Guanyu Zhou this season. He was also enthralled by the adaptability shown by Zhou in his rookie season against a potent teammate like Valtteri Bottas. Hey said,
“I am looking forward to continuing working with Zhou. From day one with the team, at the Abu Dhabi test last year, he has impressed me with his approach to work and this is always a very positive trait. We knew he was quick, but the way he adapted to F1 in such a short time has been one of the best surprises of our season. He is a very nice guy, everyone in the team likes both his personality and attitude.”
He further added that,
“He had the humility to ask questions and learn, from the engineers as well as Valtteri [Bottas], and the intelligence to apply all the information he got to improve race after race. He will have this experience to draw on next season, and I am sure he will make another step forward as we continue to grow our team.”
This does show that Daniel Ricciardo was somewhat out of consideration at Alfa Romeo as another door closed for him.
Daniel Ricciardo’s options for staying on the F1 grid appear to dwindle every race weekend. The possible options for the Australian are still a seat at Alpine or a seat at Haas.
It’s unlikely that Daniel Ricciardo will think of a move to Williams next season, considering where the team finds itself right now. There are also rumors that Ricciardo might be looking at a sabbatical for the 2023 F1 season. He could take up the reserve driver role at Mercedes in the meantime and look for a return to the grid for the 2023 F1 season.
What’s your favorite race of the 2022 season so far? Tell us in the comments below..
Edited by Aatiya Alim Qazi