Daniel Ricciardo grew up idolising one of the greatest racing drivers of all time: Ayrton Senna. It was Beco's example that led to Daniel getting into karting at the age of nine. He proved a formidable talent, competing for pole positions and podiums as he gained experience and worked his way up the karting career ladder, hoping to gain a place in a major single-seater series.
Daniel’s chance came in 2005 when he entered the Australian Formula Ford series and, although driving an uncompetitive car, made enough of an impression to secure a scholarship for the following season’s Formula BMW Asia championship.
After developing his skills in British F3 and World Series by Renault with the Red Bull Junior Team, Daniel got his F1 break when he became Scuderia Toro Rosso's third driver for the 2011 season. After putting in some impressive Friday-practice appearances during that season’s first eight GPs, he looked like he was in the frame for a Scuderia Toro Rosso seat in 2012. However, the opportunity came to finish the 2011 season as a fully-fledged racing driver with HRT. He made his full F1 race debut at the British Grand Prix, gaining invaluable race experience.
He did return to Scuderia Toro Rosso for the 2012 F1 season, teaming up with Frenchman Jean-Eric Vergne and scoring his first F1 points on his team debut with ninth place at his home grand prix.
In September 2013, Ricciardo was announced as the replacement at Red Bull Racing for his compatriot Mark Webber, who was retiring from Formula One. His performance in the 2014 World Championship was one of the talking points of the season, Daniel scoring his first grand prix win in Canada and two further victories in Hungary and the almighty Spa in Belgium. He finished in third place in the overall standings ahead of his team-mate, the four-time world champion Sebastian Vettel.
Ricciardo became the most experienced driver in the Red Bull stable when he teamed up with Daniil Kvyat for the 2015 season, a campaign which saw him finish in eighth place overall, with two podiums to his name.
Roaring back to score regular top-three finishes in 2016, the Honey Badger's smile lighting up the F1 podium an impressive eight times over the course of the season – including after a brilliant victory in a Red Bull Racing one-two in Malaysia – and finished the 2016 World Championship in third overall for the second time in his career.
Not surprisingly Daniel remains firmly in his seat at Red Bull Racing alongside Max Verstappen for 2017.Read more