Alan Jones: Ferrari F1 team should replace Raikkonen with Ricciardo

Australian Formula 1 legend Alan Jones is hoping Ferrari replaces Kimi Raikkonen with Daniel Ricciardo for the 2017 season

Alan Jones: Ferrari F1 team should replace Raikkonen with Ricciardo

Ricciardo was linked with the drive last year, along with Nico Hulkenberg and Valtteri Bottas, before Ferrari opted to retain Raikkonen for the forthcoming year.

With Raikkonen out of contract again at the end of this season, 1980 F1 world champion Jones has opted to stoke the driver-market fires before a wheel has turned in anger by suggesting compatriot Ricciardo should be team-mate to Sebastian Vettel in 2017.

"Kimi's a little bit lucky to be there [at Ferrari]," said 1980 champion Jones on the Australian Grand Prix podcast.

"But I also think Ferrari has done the right thing in that the person you know is better than the person you don't know.

"They're probably thinking 'Stick with the known factor [for now]. We've got Vettel, we've got Kimi'.

"He [Raikkonen] does actually, on the odd occasion, put up a good race, so I think they've done the right thing.

"They've obviously got plans for what they're going to do next year, which I hope is going to be Daniel Ricciardo."

ALAN JONES relives his ill-fated Haas F1 return

Asked whether he was concerned Ricciardo's career could stall if he suffers a repeat this year of his tough 2015 season, Jones replied: "No, I'm not actually.

"Red Bull has a TAG [engine], which is Renault, and I'm really glad to see Renault come back as a manufacturer which will give them the chance to step up their engine development

"But in terms of Daniel, I'm really confident, hopeful he'll land that Ferrari seat next year."

Jones would love to see Ferrari give Mercedes a run for its money this season, but feels the German manufacturer will likely score three world titles in a row.

"I think Mercedes are doing their old tricks - I think they've been sandbagging [in testing], and I think they've been doing laps with full tanks [of fuel] and so on," suggested Jones.

"But I think even they will admit they're a little bit wary of Ferrari.

"At the end of the day I still think it's going to be Mercedes, but I'm hoping that Ferrari are going to take it to them."

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