“Hasn’t met our expectations” : McLaren CEO Zak Brown applies pressure on Daniel Ricciardo

McLaren CEO Zak Brown doesn't seem to be too pleased with the results that McLaren driver Daniel Ricciardo is producing

Daniel Ricciardo with McLaren CEO Zak Brown
Daniel Ricciardo with McLaren CEO Zak Brown

McLaren brought Daniel Ricciardo as an ideal replacement for Carlos Sainz at the start of the 2021 Formula One season. Carlos Sainz left McLaren for Ferrari, and the team wasn’t too disappointed about it. They were ready to bring in Ricciardo, who McLaren CEO Zak Brown had previously requested. At the time, the Australian went with Renault.

The partnership between the 2 parties involved is strained. Ricciardo won the 2021 Italian Grand Prix, but he falls way short of his younger teammate Lando Norris in general. Ricciardo’s position is under threat because he’s already signed a new long term deal.

”Lando definitely has an edge. We would like to see Daniel much closer to Lando to have a good internal team battle. Daniel is just not comfortable with the car. We’re trying everything we can, again it was a disappointing weekend,” said Brown after the Spanish Grand Prix where Norris bagged points despite being ill while Ricciardo had to finish without points even though he had a top-10 qualifying result.

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Zak Brown strikes up differences between Lando Norris and Daniel Ricciardo

Lando Norris and Daniel Ricciardo
Lando Norris and Daniel Ricciardo

“Outside of a couple of races like Monza, it generally (the partnership) hasn’t met our expectations. All you can continue to do is work hard as a team, keep communications going and keep pushing. Hopefully at some point it will start clicking,” commented Brown on the partnership between McLaren and Daniel Ricciardo.

According to Brown, it’s not just Ricciardo’s problem, Norris has also improved as a driver. Collaborating with Sainz, Norris frequently had to hand over power to the Spaniard on Sunday, but since Ricciardo’s entry, he has taken effective control and is leading the team.

“It also points to how good Lando is. If you look at the difference between Charles (Leclerc) and Carlos (Sainz) or the gap between Max (Verstappen) and Sergio (Perez), you see gaps between teammates. I think Lando is one of the best drivers in the world at the moment. So it’s also a compliment to Lando when you look at the gap that exists,” concluded the American CEO.

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Also Read: “One of the hardest races I’ve ever done”: Lando Norris on his struggle with tonsillitis during Spanish GP