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After a difficult start to the Austrian GP weekend for Ricciardo, Sky F1's Ted Kravitz revealed there are rumours linking Alpine's Oscar Piastri to a McLaren seat for 2023. 

With Ricciardo and McLaren's partnership failing to live up to expectations, many quickly jumped on this rumour.

However, Ricciardo has a contract with McLaren that expires at the end of 2023, so a scenario where Piastri joins the Woking team would require the 33-year-old to exit from the team prematurely. 

It also seems unlikely that Alpine would be willing to "loan" Piastri to a rival team like McLaren, with a potentially vacant seat at Williams being a far more palatable option for the French squad to exercise. 

Aside from this, Zak Brown has dismissed suggestions that Ricciardo will not compete for the team in 2023, as quoted by soymotor:

"We're going to do everything we can to get him back into his best form. 

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We're going to do whatever it takes for him, work incredibly hard because we know he can win us races. 

Can he do it? That depends on the car that we give him. 

But what we ask of him is clear: that he drives at Lando's level, either slightly ahead or slightly behind.

We have seen that when we give him a car capable of winning, he can do it. 

He admits that last year wasn't a great season, but he won a race. So we have to find a way to unlock him and give him a car he feels comfortable with."

Ricciardo's P9 at the Austrian GP helped McLaren cling to 4th in the standings, but frankly, the papaya squad is fighting a losing battle against Alpine. 

Ricciardo's form relates to more than McLaren's uphill battle to keep their position in the constructors'. 

Instead, whether he can overcome his current struggles will determine if he stays with the team beyond the expiration of their current contract at the end of 2023.