"He was the guy that everyone feared" - When Daniel Ricciardo gave his take on the F1 GOAT debate
A couple of years ago, Daniel Ricciardo said that according to him, three-time world champion Ayrton Senna is the F1 GOAT.
The Aussie driver never shies away from speaking about his racing idol, as was evident during his win with McLaren in Italy back in 2021. He became emotional on that occasion, having got the chance to place the winning trophy alongside his idol's in the team's factory.
Speaking with British television personality Big Zuu in 2021 for UFC, Daniel Ricciardo said in one of his answers that in his time, everyone feared Senna.
"I would have the [to] say, Ayrton Senna," Ricciardo said. "He was really the first racing hero that I had. I was only young, I was five years old when he passed, but I do remember watching him race on TV and actually going to Adelaide in 93' for a race which he won."
"I feel like the way he touched his nation, Brazil, and the lot of good things he did for the country, but also on the flip side, he was aggressive and ruthless on track. He was the guy that everyone feared and I love that," he added.
Daniel Ricciardo reflects on his 2023 season
After the end of the 2023 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, Daniel Ricciardo stated that he wished the season was a bit longer.
The Aussie was coming in off the back of a hand injury in the final phase of the season. He had initially made it to the Hungarian Grand Prix, but injured his hand in Zandvoort. That saw him miss five races in a row.
Speaking to the media, including Motorsportweek, Daniel Ricciardo said:
“I think when I look back on this year, it’s a year I never would have expected in so many ways. I didn’t expect to be racing at all this year, let alone kind of going through everything else. You know, the place I am and what I feel, let’s say inside my heart ultimately, I’m really in a happy place, and I’m happy being here racing again.
“I’d say, like, just fully hungry and motivated. And yeah, it’s probably the first off-season that I would not want an off-season, you know. I want to keep racing and keep a bit of the flow going. But also the thought of having a little bit of a break and getting myself prepared for next year, that excites me as well.”
It would be fascinating to see if the Aussie driver can start the 2024 season positively and stake his claim for a drive with Red Bull.