Formula 1 World Champion Alan Jones doesn’t believe that Daniel Ricciardo will ever return to the grid.
Ricciardo departed McLaren at the end of the 2022 campaign following a handful of difficult years with the team.
The Australian was one regarded as one of the strongest drivers on the grid, known for his overtaking abilities that were on showcase during his stint at Red Bull.
After spending two years with Renault, Ricciardo transitioned to McLaren in 2021 – but struggled to get up to speed alongside Lando Norris.
He has since returned to Red Bull in a third driver role, but has suggested that he would look to find a way back to the field full-time in 2024.
But Jones, who won the 1980 F1 title with Williams, doesn’t see Ricciardo making a return.
“I don’t think he will get a drive at Red Bull unless something happens to the two current drivers, I can’t see him doing a Grand Prix,” he told the Herald Sun.
“At the end of the day there is probably no reason why Red Bull won’t re-sign [Sergio] Perez and obviously [Max] Verstappen [is secured in the long-term].
“I can’t see anybody at Ferrari resigning or going away, so I just can’t see where he can go. I just can’t see him getting back into Formula 1.
“Obviously everybody likes to go out on a high note and it’s just unfortunate that for whatever reason, and I don’t even think he knows himself, why his performance dropped off.
“Really, in my own opinion, I think he concentrated and spent a bit too much time for his activities out of the cockpit rather than in it. That’s my opinion.”
Ricciardo is set to be back in the paddock this weekend in Melbourne, marking his first appearance for Red Bull at a 2023 race weekend.