Mark Webber 'concerned' for Daniel Ricciardo ahead of Renault switch
Fellow Australian Mark Webber says he is "concerned" by Daniel Ricciardo's recent attitude, which could damage his chances at Renault next season.
The Red Bull driver is set to move to Renault for the 2019 season in a switch which surprised many and one that Webber described as "weird", but what concerns the former Red Bull driver turned TV pundit is Ricciardo's attitude toward the sport following a tough period.
The 29-year-old has had to endure a string of reliability failures this season, with the most recent coming in Mexico where he was in contention for the victory. That led to some strong comments from Ricciardo, who described his car as "cursed" and questioned the need to turn up for the final two events.
Although he has since backed down on those comments, Webber believes it could be a sign that he's falling out of love with Formula 1, and that won't bode well for next year.
"I think it’s quite obvious he can’t wait for the season to be over, which is a little bit of a concern," he told the Herald Sun.
"I don’t want him to fall out of love with the sport. I just think that really tests your mettle. He’ll be questioning the sport in his head.
"There’s not too many people to put an arm around your shoulder. Only the tough survive and he knows that."
Whilst Ricciardo has had many low points this year, he's also taken two race wins – the same number as his team-mate Max Verstappen – and Webber reckons 2019 will truly test Ricciardo's love of F1 as it's unlikely he'll be challenging for wins at all.
"He’s made his bed over there with Renault, which I think is a weird decision, but that’s what he wants to do because he wants a change of environment.
"He’s got to buckle up and keep going if he wants to bounce back with Renault next year, but [racing in the midfield] really can test how much he actually is enjoying the sport."