Formula One

Ricciardo details ‘behind the scenes’ role at Red Bull


Daniel Ricciardo has offered some insight into his role as a reserve driver with Red Bull Racing this season, a job that could prove important for both Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez.

Ricciardo is taking a step back from the thrills and spills of Formula 1, the Aussie planning to live his sabbatical year at a leisurely pace while reflecting on his future in motorsport.

But it won’t be one long holiday in the sun for the eight-time Grand Prix winner who, in addition to his show-run and marketing duties for Red Bull, will play an active role “behind the scenes” in helping Verstappen and Perez fully exploit the qualities of their new car.

“I’ll be there [in Milton Keynes] in a couple of weeks getting ready for the season,” explained Ricciardo . I’ll do a lot of sim work, that will be a lot of my work and my contribution and let the boys take the track stuff.

“I’ll be working behind the scenes to just develop the car and help understand the direction that Checo and Max want to take it, and try and lend some of my experience.”

Ricciardo will be on site at a selected number of races, while Liam Lawson will also be standing in the wings as Red Bull’s first substitute.

But the Aussie will leverage his experience to the best of his ability to help Red Bull defend its title.

“On race weekends I’ll listen in and even if I’m not at the circuit I’ll have access to all the communications and staying close with all the engineers and being on chat channels with them, trying to figure out what trends we’re starting to see,” said Ricciardo.

“Because even if they’re winning every race, no car is perfect – you’re always trying to chase something. So [I’ll] try and understand the direction they want the car to go in and develop.

“To develop an idea or something I’ve learned in the last few years with racing with other teams, perhaps try to lend some guidance, advice, or something for me to test in the simulator and try to give feedback if it’s positive.”

Having spent five years at Red Bull, Ricciardo’s return to Milton Keynes was like a family’s favourite son returning home, a familiarity that has put the 33-year-old in a happy place during his transition year.

“For me putting the Red Bull uniform back on, it’s a happy feeling,” he said.

“It’s like returning home, kind of now in this second phase of my career feels warm and cosy – a lot of familiar faces. Back to the family with fond memories.”

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Ricciardo details ‘behind the scenes’ role at Red Bull

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