Driver market games in 2018 were 'all new' to Ricciardo

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Daniel Ricciardo says the various talks and negotiations he undertook with several teams in 2018 were part of a process he had not yet experienced in his F1 career, and one from which he learned.

The Aussie kicked off his season knowing there would be dealings up ahead but determined to take his time before committing to his future.

Red Bull was obviously at the forefront of his options, but there were also rumors of contacts early on with Ferrari and Mercedes.

A seat at Maranello was ruled out fairly quickly but Ricciardo has revealed that his prospects with the Silver Arrows squad - which at the time had not yet renewed Valtteri Bottas' contract - remained fluid in the early part of the summer.

"I knew talks would take a bit of time probably and again, trying to feel each other out, but it got to June/July and maybe we had spoken a few times and we hadn't really got anywhere, so if you want me tell me otherwise, I will move on -- that's cool," he told ESPN.

"I guess it gets to the point like that with everyone where you want a black or white answer and that's it. I guess the games can wear a little thin.

"I don't even know if it's games, but circling around the edges, it's like -- just go straight in!

"But these are all things I will learn, and I am sure there will be another time in my career where I will need to go through this process again.

"I am sure there's things I will do differently. I don't necessarily have any regrets, it's all just a learning process."

Ricciardo ultimately decided to leave the Red Bull family for pastures new at Renault.

But the Honey Badger admitted that his dealings in the drivers' market, although stressful at times, had shed some light on a process he had not been familiar with beforehand.

"Look, part of it was fun for sure, and part of it was exciting having these little meetings," he added.

"I guess it was all new to me. I guess just hearing them out and before a meeting, maybe like 'Oh, what's going to get talked about and how deep is it going to go'. The process and all that was exciting for sure.

"I guess on one hand I had teams that really wanted me, and then on the other there were teams that were kind of half the foot in the door but not really... so Mercedes and that.

"At times it was confusing for sure, and obviously you're trying to figure out what is real and what isn't, who's genuine and who is not. Again, that was exciting, but it does keep the mind ticking a little bit."

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