Ricciardo bids farewell to Red Bull

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Madrid : Australian Formula One driver Daniel Ricciardo will leave the Red Bull racing team at the end of the 2018 season to join Renault, the two teams announced on Friday.

Ricciardo, presently fifth in the 2018 driver standings, joined Red Bull in 2014 after two seasons with Toro Rosso, although he was a part of the former's junior team in 2008, reports Efe.

"It was probably one of the most difficult decisions to take in my career so far. But I thought that it was time for me to take on a fresh and new challenge," the 29-year-old Ricciardo said in a statement published on Renault's website.

"I realise that there is a lot ahead in order to allow Renault to reach their target of competing at the highest level but I have been impressed by their progression in only two years, and I know that each time Renault has been in the sport they eventually won," Ricciardo added.

Renault president Jerome Stoll explained that his team was ready for world championships and "signing Daniel Ricciardo is a unique opportunity for Renault towards this objective."

Meanwhile, Red Bull racing team Principal Christian Horner said: "We fully respect Daniel's decision to leave Aston Martin Red Bull Racing and we wish him all the best in his future."

During his seasons with Red Bull, Ricciardo achieved seven victories, 29 podium finishes along with two pole positions and 904 championship points.