Scoring a podium result – the French team’s first since Robert Kubica at Spa in 2010 – at the Nurburgring just days after Honda announced its decision to leave F1 (again), as the Austrian outfit searches for an alternative supplier Ricciardo believes a re-partnering with Renault could still work out mutually beneficial for both parties.
“I think they could,” said the Australian, when asked if he thought the two could work together again after their previous relationship – despite those titles – ended so badly.
“It is not up to me to decide how that goes,” he added, “but I do think they could.
“There are emotions and then there is business and time, and time heals a lot of things,” he continued. “Whether things were not seeing eye to eye a few years ago, or whatever it was I don’t think that will necessarily remain forever.
“So if that is what ends up happening in the future I think they can get back on working terms. I’ve never experienced anything that was the irreparable, so I am not concerned. If that is what they do I think they will just get on with it.”
Its options severely limited (again), Red Bull is considering purchasing the Honda operation, failing which it has threatened to quit the sport (again).
“I never wanted them to struggle or suffer,” he said of his former team, where he was basically sidelined in favour of rising star, Max Verstappen. “Now they have a decision to make with what happens next.
“I don’t really look at it in a personal light of me winning or losing, it is just the nature of the sport. With these things there is always a chance, the sport is always changing so much.
“There is a chance that stuff like this happens. I do hope they find a solution and a good one. And they stay afloat and keep being a rival for the rest of us.”