Ricciardo not thinking beyond 2018

Daniel Ricciardo is out of contract with Red Bull at the end of 2018

Daniel Ricciardo is not thinking about his future beyond the start of the 2019 campaign despite being out of contract with Red Bull at the end of next season.

The Australian is among a group of drivers who have just a year to run on their existing deals, with seats at a host of front-running teams opening up.

Mercedes has signed Valtteri Bottas on only a one-year extension, while Kimi Raikkonen was afforded the same by Ferrari after which the Finn will be 39-years-old.

Ricciardo has established himself at the front of the grid since stepping up to Red Bull in 2014, and has long been linked with a move away from the team once his current deal expires.

Intensifying speculation has been the question marks surrounding Red Bull’s supply of engines after Renault elected to move its supply from Toro Rosso to McLaren.

It’s expected Red Bull will lose its supply at the end of 2018, potentially leaving it in a position to take on the unfancied Honda engines – or perhaps introduce a new engine partner via Aston Martin.

The British marque increased its involvement in the team during the week as it steps up to become title sponsor from 2018.

“It’s cool for the team obviously to have obviously a bit brand like Aston to kind of stay involved with us and even increase that partnership, so I think it speaks good things but whether that’s going deeper into what engines we’ll have in the future, I haven’t really thought about that yet,” Ricciardo said when asked about the situation by Speedcafe.com.

“I’m obviously trying to keep my eyes open a little bit with what’s happening, but for me it’s still too far ahead to worry,” Ricciardo added.

“I’m in the team next year so I can see what direction it’s going and assess everything from there.”

The 28-year-old made no secret however of his desire to win the world championship, stating that as his career wears on it is becoming an increased priority.

“I think with any team obviously, we’ll speak Red Bull, that’s where I am now, a chance to win a title,” he responded when asked by Speedcafe.com of his expectations from Red Bull in 2019.

“If I was kind of like mid-to-late 30s then who knows, maybe priorities would change but to be honest I think whilst I still love the sport like I do, I love it for the competition and there’s no better feeling of competing at the front of the grid.”

Ricciardo currently sits fourth in the championship and heads into this weekend’s Malaysian Grand Prix, an event which he won in 2016, fresh from a podium at Singapore two weeks ago.

Join the discussion below in the Speedcafe.com comments section

Please note: Speedcafe.com reserves the right to remove any comment that does not follow the comment policy. For support, contact [email protected]