Ricciardo wraps up 2022 with top 10 finish

Monday 21 November, 2022
Ricciardo in his final race for McLaren. (Photos: McLaren Media)

Daniel Ricciardo has finished his McLaren racing career with a points finish at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix overnight. 

In what was his last race for the papaya team, the West Australian produced a fitting send off in the 58-lap race to secure ninth and valuable points.

Starting from P13 after receiving a penalty for his collision with Kevin Magnussen in Brazil, Ricciardo moved up four places as a result of some retirements and some trademark overtakes.

In what was an entertaining end to the race, Ricciardo showcased his solid defensive skills having held off the outgoing Sebastian Vettel in the final stages of the race to hold onto his position.

2022AbuDhabiGrandPrixSundayGP2222_111056_ONY3169His P9 saw Ricciardo finish the year in the points for the seventh time this season and tied on 11th in the Championship with Vettel.

After finishing his two-year stint with McLaren in style, Ricciardo was relieved to end the season inside the top 10 as he enters the next chapter of his career.

“I’m relieved how it ended,” Ricciardo said.

“I look back to a week ago and if that was the finale, it certainly would have left some more of a sour taste in my mouth.

“To see the chequered flag, to be in the points, to hold off Vettel the last 10 or so laps, that was fun and I feel like I crossed the line having put in at least a solid effort.

“That makes me feel a little more fulfilled.”

Ricciardo is now likely to return to Red Bull as the reserve driver for the 2023 season, where he will link up with former teammate and 2022 champion, Max Verstappen.

Verstappen ended his second championship year with his 15th win of the season having held the lead from lights out to the chequered flag.

Behind him, a thrilling battle for second in the Drivers’ Championship reached a climatic end as Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc edged out Sergio Perez to secure a runner-up finish in the standings.

The result saw Leclerc end the year just three points ahead of Perez.

Rounding out the top five at Yas Marina were Carlos Sainz and George Russell, while Lando Norris crossed the line in sixth and with the fastest lap bonus point. 

With the 2022 FIA Formula 1 World Championship now complete, teams will now begin preparing for the 2023 season, which begins in Bahrain on 30 March.

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