Daniel Ricciardo isn’t letting questions over his future dampen his spirits after the McLaren driver made a grand entrance at the Circuit of the Americas for this weekend’s 2022 United States Grand Prix.
The Australian driver took his appreciation of American culture to another level by riding a horse into the pitlane while country singer Rob Baird sang ‘Dreams and Gasoline’, all while dressed in a Stars-and-Stripes jacket and Stetson hat.
McLaren made sure to capture the moment on their Twitter account, telling fans that the video was in fact real.
Although Ricciardo looked confident while riding Horsey McHorse, he later admitted he had some doubts over the stunt.
“[We thought] it will bring a little bit of an extra atmosphere into the paddock,” Ricciardo told Sky Sports F1.
“As we know, Thursdays are kind of quiet. So it was cool, really nice to do it. I mean, I was a little embarrassed at first but I was like: ‘You know what, just have some fun’.”
Ricciardo’s future still in doubt
While Ricciardo seems to be enjoying his time in Austin, his time on the F1 grid is quickly coming to an end.
The Australian will leave McLaren at the end of the season despite still having 12 months on his three-year deal, with the team opting to replace him with Oscar Piastri.
Although seats at Williams and Haas remain open, Ricciardo has seemingly suggested that he will have a reserve role next season, ahead of a potential return to the grid in 2024.
“You will see me around,” Ricciardo said. “It’s going to look different for me, but there is still very much still a plan in place.
“So, it’s not that I am checking out and saying ‘see you later’, it’s far from that.
“I’m just putting in a plan to honestly try to get me back to the front of the grid and win races and do all the stuff I know I can do.”
Ricciardo currently sits 12th in the Drivers’ standings on 29 points, 72 back of teammate Lando Norris.