Many were quite surprised at the results of the Chinese Grand Prix.
Highly-anticipated Lewis Hamilton struggled to gain some rhythm and was disappointed to finish in fourth place, whilst Sebastian Vettel and Max Verstappen were involved in a heavy collision, allowing the opportunity for other racers to zoom in and gain a position on the podium.
One of the biggest shocks to many was the fact Australian Red Bull driver Daniel Ricciardo stormed to an impressive victory, leaving many discussing who his future may lie with.
With his contract at Red Bull coming to its end, many rumours are circulating that the man from Down Under will take on a new challenge ahead of next season.
The impressive Aussie has burst onto the racing scene in recent years, and has established himself as one of Formula One’s best competitors.
However, many believe a change in team would bring the best out of him, and it has been widely speculated that Ferrari could be interested in obtaining his services.
This would be a sensational swoop for Ferrari, and would add to an already extremely powerful line-up they have at their disposal.
Many think Ricciardo should stay put and show loyalty to the Red Bull team which gave him the opportunity to catapult himself on to the scene, and challenge to be a world champion. However, the chance to join Ferrari must also be a relishing prospect for a number of different reasons, one being the financial side.
At 29, Ricciardo is not getting any younger, and a big payday would certainly be the pinnacle of his career. He would almost certainly take a massive raise in wages at Ferrari, and subsequently become one of Formula One’s highest paid drivers.
This is not entirely important, but could be a massive factor in persuading the Australian to swap allegiances.
However, the most interesting part of this speculation, is the fact that Ricciardo would have the chance to once again team up with Vettel, and rekindle the same partnership which saw the latter shoot to fame and Formula One stardom.
A few years back, Ricciardo outperformed his German counterpart, and many fans will be sure to see if he can replicate this at Ferrari. This would be a formidable partnership for Ferrari, who already boast arguably the best team in the world with the likes of Vettel and Kimi Raikkonen behind the wheel of their superb vehicles.
And, according to Motorsport, an agreement is potentially already in place between Ricciardo and Ferrari.
Mark Hughes wrote: “There are many different types of contractual options, but this one is said to be on both sides up to a defined date (believed to be June 30). Up until that time, neither party can officially negotiate with another.
“Because the driver is effectively locking himself out of the market for that time, discussions for his post-2018 services are contractually ‘owned’ by the team (in this case Ferrari).
“As such, he will be paid a fee. Between now and then he and Ferrari can negotiate about a future contract. This is all conventional F1 practice.”
After winning the Chinese Grand Prix, Ricciardo’s stock is at the highest it has ever been, and it is clear that now would be the perfect time to secure a big-money move.