Ace Ric­cia­rdo’s best yet

Western Suburbs Weekly - - Training & Education - By BELINDA CIPRI­ANO

FORMER New­man Col­lege stu­dent Daniel Ric­cia­rdo looked com­fort­able in front of a high-pro­file crowd as he shared stories about his For­mula 1 ca­reer at the TFS Cor­po­ra­tion’s ex­clu­sive cock­tail party last week.

Held at Blue HQ in Fremantle, former Aus­tralian crick­eter Adam Gilchrist quizzed him about his loss in Monaco, win in Malaysia and his fa­mous friends.

The boy from Dun­craig, known for his mil­lion-dol­lar smile, said he was happy to be home af­ter what had been his best year yet.

“It’s hard to deny 2014, that was my real break­through year in the sport,” he said.

“No one re­ally knew me. Peo­ple knew me for my cheesy smile, they didn’t re­ally know me as a top-tier driver and that was the sea­son that re­ally put me on the map.

“That was huge for me but I re­ally thought this year I re­ally im­proved some things and I feel the level of ev­ery­one is get­ting bet­ter ev­ery year.”

Al­lud­ing to the de­ba­cle of Monaco, where he started in pole po­si­tion but un­nec­es­sary er­rors by his crew saw him lose to Lewis Hamil­ton, Ric­cia­rdo re­mained up­beat.

The 27-year-old said he re­alised he could not win ev­ery race and it was im­por­tant to take the good mo­ments, in­clud­ing his win in Malaysia.

“It’s emo­tional, that’s the way it goes some­times,” he said.

“This year I only had one win as op­posed to three and it could have been a few more if my me­chan­ics didn’t... but it was fine.

“I race to be world cham­pion, that’s my dream and that’s why I’m here, to do it.”

As for his now-fa­mous “shoey” cel­e­bra­tion, Ric­cia­rdo said he just wanted to break the ice dur­ing a mo­ment that was of­ten for­mal.

And the Red Bull driver said his friends in high places in­cluded Prince Harry.

“I don’t like to name drop but I have hung out with him,” he said with a smile. “I’m quite good friends with his best friend so we’ve had drinks. “He’s cool and tries to go un­der the radar. “He’s pas­sion­ate about rac­ing.”

Pic­ture: Robin Kor­net www.com­mu­ni­typix.com.au d463357

Adam Gilchrist and Daniel Ric­cia­rdo at TFS Cor­po­ra­tion’s cock­tail party.

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