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Brown's relationship with Ricciardo has "never been better"

NEWS STORY
23/06/2022

Despite his claim that Daniel Ricciardo has not lived up to McLaren's expectations, Zak Brown insists his relationship with the Australian has never been better.

It was in the run up to the Monaco Grand Prix, a race Ricciardo has previously won (and been robbed of), that Brown made the comment, thereby sparking a media and social media frenzy.

Though team boss, Andreas Seidl was quick to try and calm the situation and clarify the comment, in the eyes of many the damage had already been done and the writing was on the wall.

However, Zak Brown has played down his comment, insisting that his relationship with the Australian has never been better.

"We have a great, great relationship," says the American. "We had dinner a couple of weeks ago in London, we have good laughs together and enjoy racing together so the relationship with Daniel's never been better."

Asked why he made the comment in the first place, a comment only likely to unsettle the driver at a time the team is already struggling, Brown says: "I was asked a question and I just gave an honest answer.

"I think Daniel has said the same thing," he continues. "We're here to try and get towards the front. We've had some awesome weekends, like Monza, and then some disappointing weekends and I don't think, again, coming back to our car, I don't think we're yet giving our drivers a car that's capable of being at the front on a regular basis. So we need to do that.

"We've got a great relationship and I just gave an honest answer to a question about how things are going and things could be going better, but we're going to work hard and make sure that they do in the future."

While Seidl has apologised to both drivers for Montreal, it is widely acknowledged that Ricciardo made a step forward in Baku.

"Baku was strong," Brown agrees. "You know, we need to produce a faster race car. I think last year in Monza, when we had a strong race car, we could see what Daniel and Lando could do with it. So I think we need to focus on giving our drivers better race cars.

"I think Daniel's highly motivated. He has all of our support. And you know, we're having fun and we have a great relationship with him."

Anyone else get the impression that Zak doth protest too much...

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READERS COMMENTS

 

1. Posted by Max Noble, 24/06/2022 2:44

"@Kenji - good summary of what is probably going on. Like you I believe Zak was “over sharing” a frank assessment of the situation. It will all be solved when Daniel gets back on a level playing field with Lando’s performances… or not… in which case the situation will also be resolved."

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2. Posted by kenji, 24/06/2022 2:00

"I have always seen Zak Brown as a straight shooter and a racer as well as an astute businessman. His comments were a complete surprise at the time he made them but I saw it as aimed more to assuage some possible shareholdeer dissension! The board sanctioned Ricci's employment at a very high salary and to date there had been very little success...for whatever reason. My guess was that lack of ranking was heavily weighted towards the car not the driver. Ricciardo still has the chops to win races but like everyone else he is constrained by what he sits in. Reference the GOAT for proof of that! Brown is now backtracking since there has been minor improvement. Seidl, who is the straightest of them all has acknowledged Ricciardo's major application to working with team to lioft their game so that they can actually compete with the top three. Not easy and lesser mortals would've folded long ago."

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3. Posted by Superbird70, 23/06/2022 15:58

"Saying this is like giving Daniel a kiss on both cheeks. Gonna be swimming with the fishes."

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4. Posted by Wokingchap, 23/06/2022 13:53

"If what Mr.Brown says is true, then it was totally unnecessary to say such an unsettling and unsupportive comment at such a delicate time.
Perhaps he needs some coaching from his own media staff."

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5. Posted by ClarkwasGod, 23/06/2022 13:42

"Worrisome - just like a football club chairman expressing support for his manager - shortly before the guy is sacked......."

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