Red Bull eyeing Ricciardo for Perez’s seat – Wolff

Daniel Ricciardo is being auditioned by Red Bull as a potential successor for Sergio Perez.

That is not the claim of a Formula 1 insider or broadcaster pundit, but rather Mercedes boss Toto Wolff.

Earlier in Hungary, Mercedes’ engineering boss Andrew Shovlin indicated that there may be room at the team for axed Alpha Tauri driver Nyck de Vries.

Dutchman de Vries was Mercedes’ reserve driver prior to his signing by Red Bull-Alpha Tauri for 2023, and he was spotted in a Monaco cafe with Wolff early last week.

“I do feel sorry for him,” Wolff told Sky Deutschland in Hungary.

“He had called me on Monday morning to ask if I had time for a cup of coffee. I did and I will support him as best I can.

“However, it is clear that there is no place with us,” the Austrian added, referring to the race seats occupied by Lewis Hamilton and George Russell.

Wolff thinks 28-year-old de Vries probably just needed “more time” at Alpha Tauri.

“Formula 1 is a tough world, we know that,” he said. “I think they wanted to have a benchmark with Daniel Ricciardo, to see if he can take over from Checo (Perez).

“I’m a fan of Nyck’s,” Wolff continued. “He’s always contributed a lot to the development of the car, but maybe he needed more time.

“Who knows what would have happened if he had been given the whole season. Maybe he would have been a good candidate for the Red Bull seat, but that’s not our problem.”

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