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Start United States GP
Days
Hour
Min.
Sec.
To drivers
3

Daniel Ricciardo

McLaren Racing
Nationality aus Australian
Birthplace Perth
Date of birth 01/07/1989 (32 yr.)
F1 debute 2011, Great Britain

F1 season 2021

WC Position 8
Races 16
WC points 95.0
Victories 1
Podiums 1
Pole positions 0

F1 career

World titles 0
WC points 1081
Races 204
Victories 8
Podium places 32
Pole positions 3

After two seasons with French giants Renault ended on a high note with podiums and promises of memorable tattoos, Australian ‘Honey Badger’ Daniel Ricciardo heads into 2021 with a new drive at McLaren as they look to push into the front row of the grid.

Personal information

Name Daniel Joseph Ricciardo
Team McLaren
Date of Birth July 1, 1989
Place of Birth Perth, Australia
Age 31
Height 1.80m (5' 9")
Weight 66kg
Nationality Australian
Race Number 3

Biography of F1 driver Daniel Ricciardo

Born in Australia to parents originally from Italy, Ricciardo turned to karting at the age of nine and slowly climbed the ranks, participating in multiple series before landing in Formula Three in 2008.

Known to many as the "Honey Badger" given his fuzzy demeanour but feisty driving style, the Australian grew up as a big fan of NASCAR legend Dale Earnhardt, adopting the number 3 as his racing number in honour of him.

How did the Australian make his way from Perth to F1? Here is everything you need to know about the life of Daniel Ricciardo.

F1 debut and Toro Rosso seat

Ricciardo made his first appearance behind a F1 car during a young drivers test at Jerez in December 2009 for Red Bull. He was the only driver to go into the 1:17 bracket, earning him the role of test and reserve duties for Red Bull and sister team Toro Rosso with Brendon Hartley, until the New Zealander was removed from the Red Bull Junior team.

Confirmed as Toro Rosso's test and reserve driver for 2011, Ricciardo eventually found his way onto an F1 grid. Hispania Racing brought the Australian in to replace Narain Karthikeyan for the remaining races that season, bar the Indian GP. Ricciardo made his debut at the 2011 British Grand Prix, and even took part in the inaugural Indian GP after Red Bull paid the Spanish team in order to help his learning curve. As a result it was Vitantonio Liuzzi that made way for the Indian driver.

Ricciardo's performances eventually earned him a seat alongside Jean-Eric Vergne at Toro Rosso for the 2012 season, earning his first World Championship points at his home race in Australia. The Australian would finish in the points at another five races, ending the season with 10 points.

The 2013 F1 season saw Ricciardo confirm he was a driver to look out for, outscoring Vergne 20 to 13 while out qualifying his teammate in over three quarters of the races that season. It was enough for Red Bull to team him worthy of a call up to the senior team, where he replaced fellow countryman Mark Webber.

Stepping up to Red Bull

Partnering four-time World Champion Sebastian Vettel, Ricciardo qualified second behind Lewis Hamilton in his first race of the season. To the delight of the home fans, he finished second in the race as well despite late pressure from rookie Kevin Magnussen.

Unfortunately the result wouldn't stand, as Ricciardo was disqualified after his Red Bull was deemed to have exceeded the mandated hourly fuel flow rate limit. Although the team filed an appeal the FIA decision was upheld, ending Ricciardo's hopes of becoming the first Australian to finish on the podium at home since the race became part of the World Championship.

After failing to finish in Malaysia, Ricciardo scored his first points of the season in Bahrain. He took that to the next level in Canada, becoming the fourth Australian after Jack Brabham, Alan Jones and Mark Webber to win a race after ending Mercedes run of six straight victories in 2014.

He added a second in Hungary despite finding himself third behind Fernando Alonso and Lewis Hamilton with less than four laps remaining. However after getting past the Mercedes and the Ferrari, Ricciardo went on to win by over five seconds. Back-to-back wins followed in Belgium, and he ended the season as the only non-Mercedes driver to win a race in 2014.

Having outperformed his more illustrious teammate Vettel all season, Red Bull announced that Daniil Kvyat would take over from the German in 2015. Ricciardo ended the season third in the Drivers' Championship and took home the Laurels World Sports Award for Breakthrough of the Year.

A challenging second season

Ricciardo and Red Bull's title ambitions failed to materialise in 2015, as the Milton Keynes outfit slipped behind Ferrari and Williams in the pecking order. This was in large part due to struggles with the Renault power unit, which had been out-developed by Mercedes and Ferrari.

As a result the RB11 only looked up to the challenge at high downforce tracks or in the rain. Ricciardo's best result in the early part of the season came around the streets of Monaco, finishing fifth while also registering the fastest lap of the race. It wasn't until Hungary, the 10th race of the season, that the Australian secured his first podium finish of the season in third. It could have been more had Ricciardo not collided with Nico Rosberg while trying to chase down race winner Vettel.

A second and final podium finish came in Singapore, with Vettel once again taking the chequered flag.

In the end Ricciardo finished eighth in the Drivers' Championship with 92 points, three less than teammate Kvyat. However the Australian showed he certainly had the upper hand when it came to single-lap pace, out-qualifying his teammate 14 to 5.

			© Getty Images/Red Bull Contentpool
	© Getty Images/Red Bull Contentpool

Ricciardo and Red Bull back on form

Red Bull entered 2016 with a much more competitive package, and it showed immediately. Back-to-back fourth place finishes in Australia and Bahrain were followed by the second fastest time in qualifying for the Chinese GP. Ricciardo led early on before suffering a blown tyre, which in the end consigned the Australian to another fourth place finish.

Max Verstappen became Ricciardo's new teammate starting with the Spanish Grand Prix, an event that the Dutchman won while the Australian had to settle for fourth after a late tyre blowout. Despite taking pole in Monaco, a slow pitstop ended his hopes and handed victory to Lewis Hamilton.

Podium finishes followed in Hungary and Germany, with Ricciardo introducing a new celebration - the shoey - where he drank out of his shoe. The celebration took place in Belgium as well, where Ricciardo came second, though he was joined by podium interviewer Mark Webber as well.

Ricciardo's lone win of the season came in Malaysia, taking advantage of Hamilton's engine failure to take the chequered flag. The Australian ended the season third in the Drivers' Championship.

Parting ways with Red Bull

The 2017 saw Ricciardo record his fifth career victory at the Azerbaijan Grand Prix despite qualifying down in 10th. A run of five straight podiums between the Spanish and Austrian Grand Prix, along with another three between Singapore and Japan saw Ricciardo positioned for a fourth place finish in the Drivers' Championship. However retirements at three of the final four races saw him drop to fifth in the final standings.

Things didn't improve all that much the following season, though Ricciardo took the chequered flag in China and Monaco. The latter saw him hold off the Ferrari of Vettel despite having to manage a loss of power throughout the race. In the end Ricciardo retired from eight races, tired for most in the 2018 season, while finishing sixth in the Drivers' Championship.

Perhaps most important came the announcement in August 2018 that Ricciardo would be leaving Red Bull after signing a two-year contract with Renault.

			© Renault
	© Renault

Renault and move to McLaren

Partnered with Nico Hulkenberg, Ricciardo's Renault adventure started off poorly with back-to-back retirements to start the season. In Azerbaijan the Australian reversed into Kvyat that forced both drivers to retire, while his best finish of the season came in Italy - a fourth place finish. Hulkenberg finished fifth, making it Renault's best finish since the team's return to F1 in 2016.

In the end Riccardo finished down in ninth place in the championship, ahead of his German teammate.

Ricciardo was joined by a new teammate in 2020 as Hulkenberg was replaced by Esteban Ocon. Although the Australian retired from the opening race of the season, he followed it up with three straight finishes in the points, including fourth at the British Grand Prix.

An 11 race point-scoring streak started in Belgium and included third place finishes at the Eifel and Emilia Romagna Grand Prix. The former was Renault's first podium since the 2011 Malaysian Grand Prix and the Australian's first since the 2018 Monaco Grand Prix.

Although Ricciardo ended the season fifth in the Drivers' Championship, he opted to leave the team and signed a deal with McLaren.

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