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Hulkenberg Puzzled by Ricciardo's RB Struggles

Hulkenberg Puzzled by Ricciardo’s RB Struggles

30/03/2024

Nico Hulkenberg expresses confusion over Daniel Ricciardo’s underperformance at RB, questioning the change since their Renault days.

Nico Hulkenberg looks on in astonishment at the results of former teammate Daniel Ricciardo. He cannot understand why the Australian is currently underperforming at RB, the sister team of Red Bull.

Nico Hulkenberg has been in Formula 1 for some time, just like Daniel Ricciardo. The two were teammates at Renault in 2019 after Ricciardo left Red Bull. At the French racing team, Hulkenberg could not match Ricciardo’s results, and now, years later, it’s the Australian who is under pressure.

During the first three races of 2025, teammate Yuki Tsunoda finished ahead of Ricciardo in two out of three races.

Moreover, the Japanese managed to score points for the team with a seventh-place finish in Australia, placing the team sixth in the Constructors’ Championship with six points.

Ricciardo’s Racing Riddle

Following Ricciardo’s disappointing performances, rumors circulated that he had two more races to prove himself.

These rumors were dismissed by Red Bull advisor Helmut Marko. Marko had previously emphasized to Motorsport-Total that this was not the case at all. However, it is clear that better results are expected from the eight-time Grand Prix winner.

Former teammate Hulkenberg has no idea why Ricciardo’s performances are falling short, he tells, among others, RacingNews365: “It makes no sense,” he admits, reflecting on their time together at Renault: “I don’t understand it. In 2019, he was incredibly competitive and fast, and since then…since the McLaren stint, and then the new generation of cars… It’s tough.”

The Haas driver explains that it’s difficult to make sense of the situation without knowing what’s happening inside the RB team.

“Especially when you’re looking from the outside. If you don’t have all the information and all the data, it’s hard to judge. So, I don’t know.” When asked whether he sees a clear decline in the driver’s performance, the German diplomatically replies: “It seems so, yes. He’s still good. But maybe he was stronger before?”

Hulkenberg Puzzled by Ricciardo’s RB Struggles. Hulkenberg Puzzled by Ricciardo’s RB Struggles

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