Daniel Ricciardo's undisputed status at McLaren's No.1 driver could be questioned after Lando Norris announced a surprising contract extension only a few days out from the Monaco GP.
Norris, who out performed Aussie F1 star Ricciardo in the 2021 season up until the Spanish GP, announced he had signed a multi-year extension without going into specifics.
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This guarantees McLaren will have a stable racing duo at least until the end of the 2023 season after Ricciardo's signature for the team up until that date.
“I’m delighted with the extension of our agreement with Lando for 2022 and beyond," McLaren CEO Zak Brown said in a statement.
“He’s been instrumental in our return of form here at McLaren and we’re proud of the growth he’s shown since he first started with us back in 2017.
"Lando is one of the brightest talents on the Formula 1 grid and we look forward to seeing him continue to go from strength-to-strength both on and off track.”
Lando took to Twitter to announce he excitement at the deal.
"So excited to tell you that I’m staying with McLaren," he wrote.
"My goal is to win races and world championships and over the last three years McLaren have shown me that they’re able to build a car for me to do that in. Let’s continue what we started."
Ricciardo's status at McLaren in doubt
Ricciardo headed into the 2021 season as McLaren's No.1 driver ahead of teammate Lando Norris.
However Norris completely outdrove Ricciardo in the first few races of the season, reportedly leaving the Australian driver "distraught".
Ricciardo finished ninth, seventh and sixth to start the season while Norris was third, fourth and fifth.
And according to Tremayne, Ricciardo let his emotions overflow after the season's third race at the Portuguese Grand Prix.
Despite finishing above Norris in the latest Grand Prix in Spain, many will question whether McLaren could be transitioning for a new face of the team with Norris' new contract extension.