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Ricciardo seeking $21m from McLaren

NEWS STORY
11/08/2022

It is understood that having been told his services are no longer required by the Woking team, Daniel Ricciardo is seeking a $21m (17.3m) pay-off from McLaren.

Our good friend Mat Coch makes the revelation for Speedcafe quoting various sources.

As reported last week, established sources have confirmed that Ricciardo - seen here having his back covered by Andreas Seidl - has been told by McLaren that he will not be driving for the team next season as it has agreed a deal with Oscar Piastri.

With a drawn-out legal process involving McLaren, Alpine, Ricciardo and Piastri set to dominate the coming months, it is understood that the current incumbent at the Woking team is the only party with the right to cancel his existing contract for 2023, and to exercise that right he is seeking $21m.

However, should he secure a seat for next season, the amount offered by his new employer would have to be 'refunded' to McLaren.

When the Australian previously raced for Renault he was on a reputed $20m a year. Other than the fact that it is now a buyers market - with Alpine doing the buying - the French outfit and Ricciardo could agree on a much lesser salary aware that - other than the fact there are no other decent drives available - McLaren has already covered his salary.

Seemingly, Piastri does not have a valid contract with Alpine which allowed McLaren to lodge its contract with the youngster with the Contract Recognition Board.

McLaren, which in recent years has made no secret of its financial struggles, leading to it having to be bailed out by the Bahrainis on a number of occasions, would also be liable for any legal costs involving Piastri.

On Monday, Alpine boss, Otmar Szafnauer was adamant that the French team will take the matter to the High court.

"Going to the High Court is over 90% certain that’s what we’ll do,” he told Reuters. "If the CRB says 'your licence is only valid at Alpine', and then he says 'that's great but I'm never driving for them, I'll just sit out a year', then you've got to go to the High Court for compensation."

In preparation for him joining the F1 grid, Alpine has spent millions on a series of tests at various circuits, including the Circuit of the Americas.

"We haven't sat down with the accountants to figure out everything we've spent," said Szafnauer. "We will have to do that if we go to the High Court."

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READERS COMMENTS

 

1. Posted by @R1Racing71, 11/08/2022 10:31

"Funny how things can turn around. I seem to recall that after Prost was sacked by Renault at the end of '83 he was paid by them for the 1984 season - saving Ron a small fortune in securing the services of what turned out to be one of the greatest ever.
Wind the clock forward another 10 years, Prost once again was paid off by Williams for '94 and nearly ended up back at Mclaren!
So none of the current nonsense is new - all part of the game it seems."

Rating: Positive (2)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

2. Posted by ClarkwasGod, 10/08/2022 14:33

"@ Max - Maclaren make (or made) pushchairs (buggys/strollers) - maybe not so far away, given the quality of McL's offerings this season."

Rating: Positive (3)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

3. Posted by BrightonCorgi, 10/08/2022 14:00

"Alpine should be excited to get Ricciardo for next to nothing next season. Both are in a one season bind. If Ricciardo doesn't excel in 2023; it'll be NASCAR come 2024."

Rating: Positive (1)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

4. Posted by Greg, 10/08/2022 13:19

"Have to agree here with @kenji. Why should he pay back any money. He is paid that to leave. If he picks up another drive good luck to him. Stiff for Maclaren. He was promised a winning car as the enticer to join them. They failed to deliver. End of."

Rating: Positive (3)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

5. Posted by kenji, 10/08/2022 0:49

"I am at a loss to understand why, if Ricciardo decides to race with Renault/Alpine, that he needs to reimburse any variances , between current and future salaries, with payback to McLaren? Surely he's the aggrieved party and it was McLaren who pulled the plug.They should be the ones to cop it sweet as the two issues have no commonality other than the original players. Any severance payout should be an added bonus to the 'injured party'. Being technically fired and having to endure the publicity accompanying that act can be a humbling experience for the driver plus putting a dent in his reputation leading to reduced salary offers from prospective future employers. "

Rating: Positive (7)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

6. Posted by Max Noble, 09/08/2022 23:32

"“C” and “A” say they can team with any letter they want… :-)"

Rating: Positive (2)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

7. Posted by Max Noble, 09/08/2022 23:31

"“Mc”, not “Mac” - sorry that naughty “C” crept in… I’ll check his contract…"

Rating: Positive (3)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

8. Posted by Max Noble, 09/08/2022 23:30

"Who ever was the legal council at MacLaren should be the former legal council now! Good grief such an avoidable mess. Zak should take sometime out to study contract law…"

Rating: Positive (4)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

9. Posted by Bill Hopgood, 09/08/2022 20:39

"What a mess, though not unprecedented.

Raikonnen took time out and Ferrari money not to race in F1.

That's what I'd do if I was Ricciardo and use the money to build up for a career outside of racing before coming back to another team in future.

Also, every season there are talks and contracts signed with drivers and suppliers that never make it to fruition for one reason or another it's just that this particular situation has made it to the public.

Fortunately for McLaren driver salaries are not in the cost cap.

"

Rating: Positive (1)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

10. Posted by Chester, 09/08/2022 18:38

"Couldn't happen to a better team. Sting them Daniel. Zac Brown and Lando make my skin crawl. "

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11. Posted by Dirt, 09/08/2022 18:35

"I get that drivers sometimes move despite contracts, but the whole affair feels dirty to me. Reading between the lines of the media coverage gives the impression that some parties are disregarding or trying to break contracts without sufficient grounds (or at least on disputed grounds). It will be interesting to see if that impression is true."

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12. Posted by Roli, 09/08/2022 18:20

"If Piastri is going to join McLaren, there will be a different atmosphere between the drivers, Zak Brown has shot himself in the foot, again."

Rating: Positive (5)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

13. Posted by ChickenFarmerF1, 09/08/2022 17:59

"Either McLaren is pulling off a coup of epic proportions over Alpine and Ricciardo, or they have screwed themselves big time. And I'm unconvinced of Brown's ability to pull off such a coup.

For all the faults of Ron Dennis, I just don't think this would have developed in this manner if he were still in control at Woking."

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