Marko hints Lawson set to replace Ricciardo in 2025

"We have to put a young driver in there soon"


26 June 2024 - 10:15
Marko hints Lawson set to replace (…)

Liam Lawson looks set to replace and oust Daniel Ricciardo at Red Bull’s junior team, RB, for 2025.

Amid the current driver market ’silly season’, it emerges that a key date relevant to many contracts and final deadlines is around the end of June.

"I’m ready for next week," nervous Sauber driver Valtteri Bottas said. "There’s one specific date, I can’t say what it is, but many things will be decided."

Some contractual deadlines may coincide with this weekend’s Austrian GP, while more will unfold over the course of the race at Silverstone a week later.

"Silverstone is going to be crazy," predicts Oliver Bearman, who looks set to take at least one of the seats at Haas next year. "A lot of things are going to happen."

Underperforming RB driver Daniel Ricciardo admitted in Barcelona last weekend that he was nervous about his place at the Faenza based team beyond 2024.

"It’s tough," said the Australian, "because there’s not really just one thing behind a decision. There’s so many. It can be very taxing."

One of those factors for Ricciardo is that if team owner Red Bull cannot offer its reserve driver Lawson, 22, a full race seat for 2025, he is free to sign elsewhere.

It’s no coincidence that rumours of Lawson’s talks with Audi-owned Sauber are suddenly emerging.

But Red Bull team consultant Dr Helmut Marko has now indicated that Lawson will indeed be Yuki Tsunoda’s teammate at RB next year - replacing Ricciardo.

"The shareholders have made it known that it is a junior team and we have to act accordingly," he told Kleine Zeitung newspaper ahead of the outfit’s own grand prix in Austria.

"The goal with Daniel was that he would be considered for Red Bull Racing with exceptional performances," Marko explained. "That seat now belongs to Sergio Perez, so that plan is no longer valid."

As for the RB lineup, Marko added: "We have to put a young driver in there soon. That would be Liam Lawson."

Marko has also expressed concerns about the major upgrade introduced by RB in Barcelona.

"They had a real performance crash with the car - it was a real downgrade," he told Speed Week.

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