Daniel Ricciardo responds to Christian Horner's sly dig on Red Bull departure

F1 Winter Testing in Barcelona - Day Four

Daniel Ricciardo has denied claims made by former boss Christian Horner he is ‘running from a fight’ by choosing to join Renault from Red Bull for the 2019 season.

Netflix’s upcoming documentary provides an exclusive behind the scenes look at the 2018 season and given Ricciardo's switch was such a big talking point, it does feature prominently.

During one episode of 'Formula One: Drive to Survive' Red Bull chief Horner reportedly said: 'My assumption is that he is running from a fight.' - alluding to Ricciardo's rivalry with teammate Max Verstappen.

It is believed Ricciardo and Verstappen shared a generally fairly positive personal relationship on and off the track.

Although fans will beg to differ after the Azerbaijan Grand Prix crash which seemed to be the nail in the coffin for Ricciardo's relationship Red Bull when they appeared to take Verstappen's side.

The Dutchman then went on to establish an advantage in the 2018 season over his partner, as the Aussie was hit by a number of reliability issues.

But as pre-season testing continues in Barcelona this week, the seven-time Grand Prix winner has replied to his former boss' claims he has run away.

“Firstly, and I'm sure he's not the only one who has that opinion, I can see how people might want to think that or say that," he said, per Motorsport.

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"Everyone has an opinion. That hasn't been pulled out of nowhere. It is what is – I obviously say no, not true. I love a good fight.

"It was more about me than Max. It was about me, a lot of reasons.

"One, I've stated a few times and I think some people will understand it, I was at Red Bull five years.

"They'd won four world titles and I joined straight after that. In five years, looking from that first year, I'm going to win a world title. That's going to happen.

"It didn't and we never really got close. I'm not bitter about it, that's what happened."

F1 Grand Prix of Abu Dhabi

Ricciardo’s switch to Renault seems to be an ambitious one however, the French constructors' last world championship dates back to 2006 with Fernando Alonso.

But it appears the 29-year-old has left because he fears of ‘what could have been’. He said: “I just don't want to be that kind of unhappy, bitter person that's just always 'what could have been', or 'if only I've joined Red Bull in 2013.”

Only time will tell whether his decision will prove a shrewd one.

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