Villeneuve vs Ricciardo war of words continues: He needs to man up!

Jacques Villeneuve criticised Daniel Ricciardo have taken part in a public slanging match throughout the 2024 Canadian GP weekend

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Jacques Villeneuve has once again hit out at Daniel Ricciardo in what is an ongoing war of words between the pair, as the Canadian former Formula 1 driver has now called on the RB driver to ‘man up’ in the face of criticism. 

Former F1 champion Villeneuve harshly criticised Ricciardo, urging the Australian to retire from the sport due to his underperformance. Villeneuve’s comments came after Ricciardo’s struggle to secure points in the main races this season, despite a decent showing in the 2024 Miami GP Sprint race.

Villeneuve‘s remarks were driven by frustration over Ricciardo’s lack of results and apparent excuses. In response, Ricciardo defended himself strongly, following a commendable qualifying performance at the 2024 Canadian Grand Prix. He dismissed Villeneuve’s criticism, asserting that his improved results were due to better energy management and focus.

“The thing is, you have to judge a whole season, or a few years,” Villeneuve told Sky Sports F1.  “He had a very good sprint race in Miami and a very good qualifying yesterday. 

“That is not enough, he has to carry on like this. Obviously it got to him because he reacted quite aggressively in a way that is not very professional because kids are listening to what he’s saying. And it was personal attacks about being hit on the head and stuff like that. That’s really that shouldn’t happen. 

“He should be able to take the punches, when you have a bad season… Man up! He’s had a good qualifying, he might have a good race today and that would be the right direction for him to carry on. He has to carry on like this. This is not enough.”

RB's Daniel Ricciardo and Red Bull reserve Liam Lawson in the paddock prior to practice ahead of the 2024 Saudi Arabian GP | Rudy Carezzevoli/Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool
RB’s Daniel Ricciardo and Red Bull reserve Liam Lawson in the paddock prior to practice ahead of the 2024 Saudi Arabian GP | Rudy Carezzevoli/Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool

Potential replacements for Ricciardo at RB

Earlier on Saturday, RB confirmed that Yuki Tsunoda will continue with the team in 2025, meaning there is only one seat which needs to be filled for next season. Ricciardo is out of contract with RB at the end of the 2024 F1 campaign and has seen his ambition of moving up to the main Red Bull team vanish on the announcement of Sergio Perez’s renewal. 

Liam Lawson, who deputised for Ricciardo in 2023 when RB were known as AlphaTauri, has been linked to partner Tsunoda in 2025, with Villeneuve suggesting that Ricciardo isn’t in keeping with the team’s tradition of being a testing ground for young driving talent. 

“There is Isack Hadjar, there’s not only Liam Lawson as Helmut Marco said yesterday,” Villeneuve continued. “There are more drivers on the list. And that team is normally made to prep drivers for the main team, not to have drivers that have been in F1 for a long, long time.”

John Smith
John Smithhttps://total-motorsport.com
Editor at Total-Motorsport.com and all round Motorsport journalist specialising in Formula 1, IndyCar and Formula E.
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