Scuderia Toro Rosso team principal Franz Tost has revealed that there is a “high chance” that Daniel Ricciardo will move to Red Bull next season to partner Sebastian Vettel in Milton Keynes.
A seat has become vacant after Mark Webber confirmed his retirement from the sport at the end of the season, and the defending world champions appear to have narrowed their decision down to Ricciardo and Lotus driver Kimi Räikkönen. However, Tost is sure that his driver will make the jump to the triple-champion team.
“The likelihood is pretty high,” Tost told the official Formula One website. “Red Bull Racing is showing interest in Daniel and the decision will be made inside Red Bull. So there is no decision yet – but my understanding right now is that it could, in fact, be Daniel.”
Tost also explained what advice he has given Ricciardo in case of Red Bull giving him the seat.
“Very simple things. I told him that he’s got six months now – if Red Bull Racing picks you – to prepare for 2014 and never forgetting along that way that in 2014 you will be the team mate of a three-time champion. Prepare mentally.”
Ricciardo tested for Red Bull at Silverstone last month, but a rumor at the Hungarian Grand Prix emerged suggesting that Fernando Alonso could also be a candidate for the seat, potentially complicating the team’s decision. However, it may be a case of not wishing to have two strong personalities at Red Bull for risk of splitting in inter-team relations.