Ricciardo has no Red Bull regrets, Horner sure he'll 'come through' at McLaren

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Daniel Ricciardo insists he has no regrets over his decision to leave Red Bull at the end of 2018.

The Australian shocked the Formula 1 paddock when he opted to sign with Renault for the 2019 season, having become largely overshadowed by Max Verstappen at the Milton Keynes-based team.

Since then, however, Ricciardo has more often been mired in the midfield, but for two podiums last year, and even agreed to join McLaren for 2021 before the 2020 season had begun.

Meanwhile this year, Red Bull finally has a car that can consistently take on if not beat Mercedes, with Max Verstappen leading the championship by eight points from Lewis Hamilton ahead of the Hungarian Grand Prix.

“I don’t have regrets. I made every decision for a reason," Ricciardo said.

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“Every decision you make is a time or a moment in your life that is right or best at that time. I certainly don’t look back with regret. I don’t question anything.

“I look at their results this year and I guess that’s where the question comes from, is do I think it could that have been me? I look at that and I am honestly happy for them.

“Don’t get me wrong, I would love to be doing the winning, but I’m happy for them.

"They are challenging Mercedes and they look like they are in a real hunt for the title this year so, yeah, I see all the Red Bull guys and I am stoked they are doing what they are doing.

“Certainly no regrets. Just life.”

Since leaving, Ricciardo has given various reasons for his departure with some believing increasing favouritism towards Verstappen was a key factor.

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His latest one though is a little different.

“In a way, I got out of Red Bull because I had a fear of becoming complacent,” he told Formula1.com.

“I was so comfortable with the team and familiar with everyone and I was worried that maybe there are things I’m missing. You’re definitely out of your comfort zone going to a new team."

His latest move to McLaren though hasn't been easy, with Ricciardo struggling to adapt to the MCL35M.

“It requires a bit more work and a bit more energy, but I feel over time – and I’m obviously committed to McLaren for the next few years – it should pay off. Whether it’s six months’ time, 12 months’ time, I should be a more complete driver," he added.

“I’m very comfortable with the team, we all have a good relationship. We did a lot of work pre-season, so the bigger percentage is me getting up to speed – and by that, I mean getting comfortable driving it the way it should be driving the car.”

As for Red Bull, team boss Christian Horner still has great respect for Ricciardo.

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"When he announced he was leaving Renault, he gave me a call in the shutdown last year," he revealed on the Beyond The Grid podcast.

"I remember him saying, 'You're probably thinking I told you so, and yeah you did!' But yeah, that was his decision that he felt he needed to make at that time.

"He's still a great friend of the team. He's a great driver.

"I'm sad to see him having the struggles that he's having at the moment," Horner admitted. "But I'm sure he'll come through them."