Interview with Toro Rosso's Daniel Ricciardo

Interview with Toro Rosso's Daniel Ricciardo

15 December 2011 – Daniel Ricciardo’s elevation to a Toro Rosso race seat had been anticipated by many for much of the 2011 Formula 1 season, although the news was officially confirmed by the team on Wednesday night. Speaking from his family home in Perth, Australia, the 22-year-old – who raced with HRT on 11 occasions this year - shares his delight.

Congratulations on getting a drive with Scuderia Toro Rosso. How does it feel?
It feels amazing! It’s nice coming into next season knowing what I’m doing and being able to focus solely on that. I am looking forward to working with a good group of people that I have already spent a lot of time with this year. So there’s plenty to look forward to in 2012.

How did you find out you had the drive?
I was actually at home, it was after dinner and the phone call came. It was short, sharp and to the point, but it contained all the news I wanted to hear. It was an awesome Christmas present and a big relief. I was with Mum and Dad at the time and I came out of my room and told them the news and it felt pretty special.

Since the last race of 2011 in Brazil, were you ever concerned you might not have a drive for 2012?
Until something is done you are always going to be a little bit concerned, but I know everyone at Red Bull is looking after my interests and I felt I had done a good enough job this year for them to try and find me a seat for 2012. I had faith something would come through.

You’ve had a busy year, starting out driving Free Practice 1 and then actually racing in the last 11 Grands Prix from Silverstone onwards. What are the main lessons you learned this year?
Looking back at the whole year, I did more travelling than ever before in my life and I found out it can be really tiring and can take it out of you. So I learned how important it is to be on time, to manage my time as efficiently as possible and to rest when I can. There was so much to take in this year and from the driving point of view - as a reserve driver you can see everything the job involves - but until you are actually racing you do not realise the demands it puts on you, so that was another important lesson. I learned to get my priorities right and not waste my energy elsewhere.

How well do you know your new team-mate, Jean-Éric Vergne?
Pretty well. We were signed up as part of the Red Bull Junior team on the same day and we were team-mates back then, in the Formula Renault 2.0 series. I spent some time with him at his house in France, going karting together. We had a pretty good relationship by the standard of racing driver team-mates. As we progressed, the rivalry got stronger between us, but the important thing is that we respect one another. We both want to beat each other more than anyone else and it’s been like that since we first raced together. It’s a good thing and means we will get the maximum out of the equipment we are given. Next year will be a proper test for both of us.

When will you be coming back to Europe?
I have spoken to Laurent (Mekies, Chief Engineer) and we are putting together a pre-season programme now. I imagine that very early in the New Year I will have to abandon the beautiful Australian summer and head for freezing Italy and get down to business, making sure I am as well prepared as possible.

It means you’ve got the best incentive to push hard on your winter training…
Yes, my trainer told me I could take it easy until Christmas, but once I heard I got the drive I wanted to go out and bash myself up in the gym.

Having signed up now, does it mean you can actually have an input on the technical side of next year’s Toro Rosso car?
Yes, there are some areas where we can start early. For example, there are different options for my position in the cockpit and the layout of the steering wheel and the team has already asked me about my preferences for this. It means that, going into testing, I should be comfortable and feel the car is mine.


Interview provided by the Toro Rosso press department

related

Comments

Latest News
Full
Compact

  1. Friday 1 July 2016

  2. Hamilton braced for engine grid penalties 06:12

    Hamilton braced for engine grid penalties

    Lewis Hamilton says he is bracing himself for engine-related grid penalties over the remainder of the season after taking on a…

    F1
  3. Video of the Day: Red Bull Ring hot lap 05:22

    Video of the Day: Red Bull Ring hot lap

    Join Daniel Ricciardo for a hot lap of the Red Bull Ring ahead of this weekend's Austrian Grand Prix.

    F1
  4. Thursday 30 June 2016

  5. 19:03

    Latest F1 photos: Thursday at Spielberg

    F1
  6. Ferrari presents updated halo device 19:01

    Ferrari presents updated halo device

    Ferrari has publicly debuted an updated version of its 'halo' device, as Formula 1 inches closer to introducing increased…

    F1
  7. Sainz Jr. sure top team chance will come 17:08

    Sainz Jr. sure top team chance will come

    Carlos Sainz Jr. is adamant that an opportunity with a leading Formula 1 team will come, following confirmation that he will…

    F1
  8. Alonso: Busy period will test McLaren 16:50

    Alonso: Busy period will test McLaren

    Fernando Alonso says the upcoming busy period in the Formula 1 calendar will provide an all-round test of the competitiveness of…

    F1
  9. Lowes 'astonished' by Aprilia test debut 16:37

    Lowes 'astonished' by Aprilia test debut

    Sam Lowes says he was left "astonished" by his first experience of MotoGP machinery as he tested Aprilia's RS-GP during a…

    MotoGP
  10. Ricciardo confirms Red Bull 2018 deal 14:29

    Ricciardo confirms Red Bull 2018 deal

    Daniel Ricciardo has formally confirmed that he will remain with Red Bull until at least the end of 2018, after Team Principal…

    F1
  11. Bottas eyes Williams podium challenge 14:05

    Bottas eyes Williams podium challenge

    Valtteri Bottas is confident that Williams can challenge for the podium positions at the Austrian Grand Prix as it bids to…

    F1
  12. Ericsson: Sauber outlook more positive 13:59

    Ericsson: Sauber outlook more positive

    Marcus Ericsson believes the outlook for Sauber is more positive, having negotiated "the most difficult part" of a troublesome…

    F1
  13. Haryanto still unclear over F1 future 13:50

    Haryanto still unclear over F1 future

    Rio Haryanto says he is still uncertain whether he will finish the current Formula 1 campaign with Manor but understands that…

    F1
  14. Haas opts to switch focus to 2017 car 12:24

    Haas opts to switch focus to 2017 car

    Haas Team Principal Guenther Steiner says that the rookie outfit has now switched the majority of its focus to developing its…

    F1
  15. Video: Formula 1 driver eye-tracking 12:08

    Video: Formula 1 driver eye-tracking

    Explore the skills and reaction times of Nico Hülkenberg as he wears special eye-tracking glasses.

    F1
  16. Pérez not distracted by Ferrari rumours 12:03

    Pérez not distracted by Ferrari rumours

    Force India driver Sergio Pérez insists he will not become distracted across a busy period of four races in five weekends as…

    F1
  17. IndyCar linked with Surfers Paradise return 08:40

    IndyCar linked with Surfers Paradise return

    IndyCar has been linked with a potential return to Surfers Paradise in Australia, eight years after the US-based category last…

    Indy
  18. Mick Schumacher will not 'rush' career 07:42

    Mick Schumacher will not 'rush' career

    Mick Schumacher, the son of seven-time Formula 1 World Champion Michael, says that he will not be "rushed" as he attempts to…

    F1
  19. Video of the Day: Ferrari on Austrian GP 05:36

    Video of the Day: Ferrari on Austrian GP

    Ferrari looks ahead to the Austrian Grand Prix at the Red Bull Ring with performance engineer Jock Clear.

    F1
  20. Wednesday 29 June 2016

  21. 17:02

    Book F1 tickets and join the action live!

    F1
  22. Sainz Jr. to stay at Toro Rosso in 2017 15:50

    Sainz Jr. to stay at Toro Rosso in 2017

    Carlos Sainz Jr. will remain at Toro Rosso in 2017, for what will be a third successive campaign, Red Bull team boss Christian…

    F1
  23. Video: Vettel's Austrian Grand Prix guide 15:44

    Video: Vettel's Austrian Grand Prix guide

    Ferrari driver Sebastian Vettel looks ahead to this weekend's Austrian Grand Prix at the Red Bull Ring.

    F1
  24. Lauda: Halo could threaten F1's DNA 15:32

    Lauda: Halo could threaten F1's DNA

    Triple Formula 1 World Champion Niki Lauda reckons the sport's DNA could be threatened by its ongoing safety drive, which…

    F1
  25. Stoner makes Ducati MotoGP test return 13:03

    Stoner makes Ducati MotoGP test return

    Casey Stoner has returned to action for Ducati during this week's private MotoGP running at the Misano circuit, marking his…

    MotoGP
  26. Various track changes at Red Bull Ring 12:36

    Various track changes at Red Bull Ring

    Various track changes have been made at the Red Bull Ring ahead of this year's Austrian Grand Prix, with extra run-off areas and…

    F1
  27. Video: Brawn BGP 001 back in action 12:02

    Video: Brawn BGP 001 back in action

    Watch as Martin Brundle drives Jenson Button's 2009 title-winning Brawn-Mercedes BGP 001 at Goodwood.

    F1
  28. Räikkönen told to prove he 'deserves' seat 10:35

    Räikkönen told to prove he 'deserves' seat

    Ferrari President Sergio Marchionne has told Kimi Räikkönen he must prove that he "deserves" a contract extension by…

    F1
  29. Binder takes Matsushita's seat for Austria 08:23

    Binder takes Matsushita's seat for Austria

    René Binder will replace the banned Nobuharu Matsushita at ART Grand Prix for this weekend's GP2 round in his home country of…

    GP2
  30.  Preview: Austrian Grand Prix - Round 9 07:26

    Preview: Austrian Grand Prix - Round 9

    Formula 1 teams head to Spielberg, Austria for the first of four Grands Prix in just five weekends, as part of a particularly…

    F1
  31. Video of the Day: Perfect F1 pit-stop 05:28

    Video of the Day: Perfect F1 pit-stop

    Go behind-the-scenes at the McLaren Technology Centre to discover what goes into a perfect pit-stop.

    F1
  32. Tuesday 28 June 2016

  33. 16:35

    F1 photos: Hockenheim media event

    F1
  34. In photos: Austria and its F1 drivers 15:42

    In photos: Austria and its F1 drivers

    Austria and the Red Bull Ring play host to Formula 1 this weekend, but there is no home racer for the local crowd to support. It…

    F1
  35. Aguri to leave FE after selling licence 14:37

    Aguri to leave FE after selling licence

    Team Aguri has announced that it has agreed the sale of its Formula E licence to new investors, meaning this weekend's season…

    FE
  36. Williams confident over Austria chances 14:12

    Williams confident over Austria chances

    Pat Symonds is confident that Williams will deliver another strong Austrian Grand Prix performance, though remains wary of…

    F1
  37. Mallya targets more podium finishes 12:32

    Mallya targets more podium finishes

    Force India team boss Vijay Mallya has set his sights on achieving further podium finishes over the course of the 2016 campaign…

    F1
  38. Pirelli reveals British GP tyre selections 11:08

    Pirelli reveals British GP tyre selections

    Formula 1 tyre supplier Pirelli has revealed the team-by-team tyre compound selections for the British Grand Prix, with the Soft…

    F1
  39. Video: IndyCar Road America highlights 11:04

    Video: IndyCar Road America highlights

    Watch highlights of last weekend's Kohler Grand Prix at Road America, won by Penske driver Will Power.

    Indy
  40. Rosberg set for new two-year deal 10:22

    Rosberg set for new two-year deal

    Nico Rosberg is close to signing a two-year contract extension to remain at Mercedes, with only small "details" to be finalised…

    F1
  41. Steiner: Haas will get on top of tyre woes 10:12

    Steiner: Haas will get on top of tyre woes

    Haas team boss Guenther Steiner is adamant that the outfit will eventually get on top of its tyre-related struggles, linking…

    F1
  42. Hernández left to rue lost victory chance 09:22

    Hernández left to rue lost victory chance

    Aspar rider Yonny Hernández was left to rue a lost victory chance as he crashed out of the lead during last weekend's Dutch TT…

    MotoGP
  43. Ecclestone to look at 'more equal' payments 07:46

    Ecclestone to look at 'more equal' payments

    Formula 1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone says that he will be looking into how prize money is split and handed out within the sport…

    F1
  44. Video of the Day: Ferrari at Goodwood 05:18

    Video of the Day: Ferrari at Goodwood

    Ferrari presents highlights of its time at the 2016 edition of the annual Goodwood Festival of Speed.

    F1
more news