‘He’s Expected to Win All the Time’ – Daniel Ricciardo Credits Lewis Hamilton for Dealing With Title Pressure Over Each F1 Season

Published 04/11/2021, 2:37 AM EDT
MONTE-CARLO, MONACO: Daniel Ricciardo of Australia and Renault Sport F1 walks to his garage before qualifying for the F1 Grand Prix of Monaco at Circuit de Monaco in Monte-Carlo, Monaco. (Photo by Charles Coates/Getty Images)


Since the 2014 F1 season, seven-time world champion, Lewis Hamilton, has definitely been the man to beat, but his astonishing success has always been overshadowed by Mercedes’ dominance.

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Hence, whenever someone arrives at this topic, they get directed to the question of whether other drivers could beat Lewis considering the pacy Mercedes car deserves a fair share of appreciation for the Briton’s successful run in the sport.

And McLaren driver, Daniel Ricciardo, is the latest driver to join the pool of opinion on Hamilton’s ability to win championships in an underwhelming car. Although the Australian acknowledged that others could probably beat Hamilton, he still felt that it might not be as easy as it sounds.

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What did Daniel Ricciardo say?

Speaking to SquareMile, the Honey Badger reckoned that none of the drivers on the current grid have experienced the pressure of competing for a title. Meanwhile, Hamilton has been soaking himself in that pressure for almost a decade.

I think, where we can’t be too aggressive or disrespectful to Lewis, is that, do a few of us believe we could beat him? Yes. I’m quite sure of that,” he said.

Formula One F1 – Bahrain Grand Prix – Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir, Bahrain – McLaren’s Daniel Ricciardo during the press conference FIA/Handout via REUTERS

But none of us have ever been in the hunt for a title. None of us have dealt with that pressure. None of us have had that year after year.”

Hamilton is on course to secure his fifth consecutive world championship title this season. And this wouldn’t even be his biggest feat. What’s more is that the Briton is also just a title shy of his eighth, which will see him blitz past Michael Schumacher‘s long-held record of 7.

Every weekend Lewis Hamilton rocks up: Ricciardo

The McLaren driver felt that Hamilton, with the consistent performances, dragged himself into a position where he had to win every single race.

Pretty much every weekend he rocks up to a race. Yes, he has the best car. But he’s also expected to win all the time,” he said. “And if he doesn’t, it’s, ‘OK, what happened to Lewis?‘”

ISTANBUL, TURKEy: Race winner Lewis Hamilton of Great Britain and Mercedes GP removes his safety gear as he celebrates winning a 7th F1 World Drivers Championship in parc ferme during the F1 Grand Prix of Turkey at Intercity Istanbul Park in Istanbul, Turkey. (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)

The last time Hamilton lost a one-on-one battle with his rival was back in 2016 while competing against his teammate, Nico Rosberg.

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And now, after four seasons, the fight for the championship is starting to gain some steam again. Only this time, it is the much-anticipated Max Verstappen.

So, can the Dutchman finally break through the seven-time world champion’s resilience and put a top to the Briton’s dominance? Well, irrespective of who wins the title, let’s hope that the duo manages to put on a show for the fans.

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DIVE DEEPER

Daniel Ricciardo Reveals Gifting Hamilton ‘Something That’s More Meaningful Than Seven-World Titles’

7 months ago

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Rohit Kumar

898 articles

Rohit Kumar is an F1 author at EssentiallySports. He has been an ardent follower of the racing series since 2007, with his love for the sport coinciding with his love for Kimi Raikkonen. He is also an ardent follower of Sebastian Vettel and Aston Martin Racing.

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