Daniel Ricciardo insisted he won’t give his critics “the time of day” as he addressed comments made by Sky Sports F1 pundit Jacques Villeneuve at the Canadian Grand Prix.

F1’s 1997 world champion Villeneuve, said on Friday that Ricciardo’s “image” rather than his results have extended the RB driver’s career in the sport.

Ricciardo, an eight-time race winner, was left without a drive in 2023 after being let go by McLaren but returned midway through last season to replace Nyck de Vries at Red Bull’s junior squad.

The Australian responded by producing his best qualifying performance of the season on Saturday, finishing fifth at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve.

Ricciardo told Sky Sports F1: “I’ve just been told. I don’t listen or read but yeah, there’s definitely some people out there who… yeah, whatever, I won’t give them the time of day.”

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Highlights of qualifying for the Canadian Grand Prix.

The 34-year-old then pointed to his strong performance throughout the weekend and jokingly made an expletive remark before pretending to end his interview with Sky Sports F1’s Rachel Brookes.

“Top five, I’ve been quick all weekend. We’re less than two tenths from pole, so *** ****”

Ricciardo had been outqualified by team-mate Yuki Tsunoda on all but one occasion this season going into Saturday’s session, while the Japanese driver also holds a 6-1 advantage in race results.

A one-year contract extension for Tsunoda was announced ahead of qualifying in Canada on Saturday, with Ricciardo’s future still up in the air.

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Jacques Villeneuve wonders why Daniel Ricciardo is still driving in F1 given his lack of recent success.

“I think this year hasn’t really been always a question of if I’ve still got the speed to do it, it’s just been the consistency, which I haven’t been able to show it week in, week out,” Ricciardo said.

“It’s definitely been more of a struggle, or more than I thought. But I know the speed is there and it’s just tapping into it. And I look at myself first.

“You’re always trying to fine tune the car but I feel like it’s more just getting myself in that sweet spot.

“Maybe 10 years ago it came easier. Maybe when you’re a kid, you just jump in and drive, and the older you get, the more things are around your life and involved, and can maybe interfere.

“It’s just trying to acknowledge that and make sure I’m coming into the weekend with a clear head and ready to go.”

Villeneuve: Ricciardo needed the push

Reacting to qualifying in Montreal, Villeneuve insisted that Ricciardo needs to maintain Saturday’s level of performance to prove he deserves to remain in F1.

“Like Christian (Horner) said, he needs the push and the pressure, and it worked. It paid off,” Villeneuve said.

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Both RB drivers Daniel Ricciardo and Yuki Tsunoda say they still remain optimistic about their future at Red Bull despite the news Sergio Perez will continue with the team for another two years.

“It’s working well. The car suits him this weekend and when you have a car that suits you, you drive at your best.

“That was one good qualifying. If he can carry on this weekend like this and do four, five, six more races like this, then he’ll be fine. But like he said, he’s been lacking consistency this year.

“He’s been given chances. Even during this whole season, it’s been a tough season, and he keeps getting a chance. So he needs to show it on track. Today was a good qualifying. He needs to carry on.”

Sky Sports F1’s live Canadian GP schedule

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A look back at some of the most dramatic moments from the Canadian Grand Prix.

Sunday June 9
5.30pm: Grand Prix Sunday – Canadian GP build-up
7pm: THE CANADIAN GRAND PRIX
9pm: Chequered Flag – Canadian GP reaction
10pm: Ted’s Notebook

Formula 1 is on Montreal for the Canadian Grand Prix and you can watch every session at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve this weekend live on Sky Sports F1, with Sunday’s race at 7pm. Stream every F1 race and more with a NOW Sports Month Membership – No contract, cancel anytime