Daniel Ricciardo Reveals His Two Biggest Heroes in Life Including McLaren F1 Legend

Published 09/10/2021, 5:15 AM EDT
Formula One F1 – Belgian Grand Prix – Spa-Francorchamps, Spa, Belgium – August 26, 2021 McLaren’s Daniel Ricciardo in the FIA Press Conference FIA/Handout via REUTERS


For many, Ayrton Senna is regarded as their inspiration in Formula One and Daniel Ricciardo is no different. The Australian was recently asked who he looked up to in motorsport, and he couldn’t think of anyone else other than the Brazilian legend.

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However, the McLaren driver has another sportsperson he looks up to. As they are racing in Italy this weekend, Ricciardo also sees MotoGP icon, Valentino Rossi as an idol.

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Daniel Ricciardo see Senna as his idol in Formula One

When drivers are young, they often look up to Michael Schumacher or Senna; a few of the greatest drivers in Formula One. The 32-year-old opened up about how he idolized Senna. Not only that, but he also talked about how Rossi was an icon in the world of racing.

Speaking ahead of the Italian Grand Prix at Monza this weekend. The Australian had stated his admiration for the F1 legend, He said, “So hero, well, I had a few, I had a few But I think racing hero was yeah, Senna. Senna was the first one.”

Apart from naming Senna as one of his idols in motorsport. The driver hailing from Perth also was a big fan of Rossi; a 9-times world champion in the world of MotoGP.

Ricciardo continued, “That we’re in Italy of course I was a big fan and still am a big Valentino Rossi fan. So doesn’t always have to four wheel but yeah two people that certainly inspired me.”

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Daniel on the experience he got driving Ayrton’s championship-winning car

Not that long ago, Daniel got to be behind the wheel of Senna‘s McLaren at the festival of speed. He talks about the surreal experience of driving the iconic car, and what he loved most about it.

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He said as quoted by GPFans, “It’s crazy. These days we don’t see…I can see the bottom of the tyre here. I can see everything around me and in the current cars we don’t even see the nose.”

Formula One F1 – Hungarian Grand Prix – Hungaroring, Budapest, Hungary – July 29, 2021 McLaren’s Daniel Ricciardo during a press conference ahead of the Hungarian Grand Prix Pool via REUTERS/Florion Goga

“It’s my first time in an old McLaren F1 car and it’s a bit of a pinch myself moment. I think this first one I’ll soak it all in and if it dries up I’ll maybe have a bit more fun,” Ricciardo explained.

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Now with his attention turned towards the Italian Grand Prix at Monza this weekend. The McLaren driver hopes to bring a good result for the Woking-based outfit & and help them gain a few places in the constructor’s championship.

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Arpit Gomes

842 articles

Arpit Gomes is an F1 author at EssentiallySports. Currently pursuing his Journalism degree from Xavier’s Institute, he is a big fan of McLaren and their driver Lando Norris and Daniel Ricciardo. Arpit always looks forward to the paddock moving to Spa and drivers dealing with the exciting Eau Rouge corner as well the straight at Monza.

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