Jones: Ricciardo grows horns when it counts
29 July 2014 – Former Formula 1 World Champion Alan Jones reckons fellow Australian Daniel Ricciardo has proved that he is capable of running with the best of the field following his victory in the Hungarian Grand Prix.
Ricciardo took his second win of the season at the Hungaroring with two fine late passes on former title winners Lewis Hamilton and Fernando Alonso.
The triumph came less than eight weeks after he had taken his maiden Formula 1 victory in Canada.
"I think Daniel's drive was exemplary," 1980 Champion Jones said in an interview with Reuters.
"He did a really super job in looking after his tyres, displayed a lot of maturity and I think he has well and truly cemented himself in the team now."
"He is a contender [for the title], there is no doubt about it," the 67-year-old added.
"He is not a contender this year obviously because Mercedes have got the jump on everyone. Get him a good car next year. If you put that [Mercedes engine] in that bloody Red Bull, he would be a contender.
"Or get him a Mercedes, because he has proven he can qualify consistently in the top four. He can run up there with the best of them. He doesn't pile up the road or have any accidents.
"I call him a baby-faced assassin. He hasn't got that honey badger on the back of his helmet for nothing.
"He is very affable, he is a terrific kid and he is always smiling but he grows horns when it counts, when he has got his bum in the car."