Ricciardo: 'No rush' on 2023 decision as Mercedes rumours intensify

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Daniel Ricciardo insists there is "no rush" to decide his next move for 2023.

The Australian is leaving McLaren at the end of this year, after agreeing on a settlement with the team to make way for Oscar Piastri.

Despite open seats at Williams, Haas and Alpine, Ricciardo is instead being strongly linked to a reserve driver role at Mercedes for next year, with France's Canal+ reporting talks are at an "advanced stage".

However, speaking on Thursday in Japan, the 33-year-old denies he is becoming "keen on resolving" his future.

“I am just taking time to figure out what will be the best thing for me, there is no rush," he said.

"I feel no pressure to quickly sign something. I want to take the right amount of time. I won’t just sign the first contract to be back on the grid.

“I’ll keep going with the season and it will become clear what is best for me.”

Previously, Ricciardo has made it clear he is open to a sabbatical from F1 in 2023 if it means returning in a competitive seat in 2024.

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As it stands, Mercedes is one such option as Lewis Hamilton is out of contract after next year, although recent comments from the seven-time world champion suggest he isn't retiring any time soon.

The Briton also believes Ricciardo would be foolish to demote himself to a reserve driver role.

“I think he should be racing, personally,” said Hamilton. “I think he’s far too talented and he’s earned the right to be amongst us all racing.

“But of course, if he’s a part of our team that would be great, but I mean, a third [driver] role is not really I think what’s best for him, so if I was managing him, you’d be racing.”

Ricciardo Hamilton

Ricciardo also arrives at Suzuka after his best result of the season, finishing fifth last Sunday in Singapore, but the eight-time Grand Prix winner played down its significance regarding 2023.

“Good results help, they make everything better," he said. “But this isn’t a question of whether I still want to do it. I do.

“The result felt good but doesn’t change my course [for next season]. That’s why I want to be at the front.”