Mercedes boss Toto Wolff says he considered partnering Lewis Hamilton with Daniel Ricciardo for the upcoming season.
“We’ve always had an eye on Daniel,” Wolff told Brazil’s Globo.
Wolff has admitted he looked at other options before backing his secondary driver.
“If you are happy in a relationship, you don’t need to flirt with another woman,” he added.
“If in May or June we were unhappy with Valtteri, we would have continued the conversations.
“But because Valtteri was doing well at that point of the season, we did not want to waste Daniel’s time.”
Ricciardo made a shock move from Red Bull to Renault where he will drive alongside Nico Hulkenberg.