'Go f*** yourselves': Ricciardo's burn for critics after F1 victory

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·Sports Reporter
·4-min read
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Daniel Ricciardo proved critics who questioned his F1 future wrong with a barnstorming win at the Italian GP. (Photo by Clive Mason - Formula 1/Formula 1 via Getty Images)
Daniel Ricciardo proved critics who questioned his F1 future wrong with a barnstorming win at the Italian GP. (Photo by Clive Mason - Formula 1/Formula 1 via Getty Images)

Daniel Ricciardo isn't known for mincing his words and he really only had one message for critics who had written him off after a troubled start to life with McLaren.

A short, but sweet, 'go f*** yourselves'.

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The Australian driver has been the toast of the F1 world for the last week after breaking through for his first grand prix win in three years at the recent Italian Grand Prix.

Ricciardo's victory also marked McLaren's first F1 win since 2012, and their first 1-2 finish since 2010.

It was the perfect antidote to an increasingly worrisome start to his time at McLaren, struggling to come to grips with the car and being handily beaten by young teammate Lando Norris.

In an interview for the Pardon My Take podcast, Ricciardo admitted it had been a tough year leading into the Italian GP, but said he had never lost faith in himself.

Soon after, he turned his sights to those who had suggested his days in F1 could be numbered.

“I don’t like talking about myself and I’ll try and make it not sound arrogant. But, because for me it had been three years and it’s been a tough year and there were still people surely questioning my ability," Ricciardo said.

“Putting in the fastest lap of the race in the last lap where the victory was in my hands, that for me was like a little thing to say, ‘Guys I did not feel the pressure this whole time’.

“Just for my peace of mind I’m going to set the fastest lap just to say, ‘I told you so and go f*** yourselves’.

“It was my way of saying I love the pressure.”

Despite teammate Norris' occasional suggestions throughout the race that he had more pace than the Australian, Ricciardo proved they weren't entirely accurate by clocking the fastest lap of the race on the final trip around the Monza circuit.

Ricciardo said that was most definitely a shot at his critics.

“It was to remind people that I haven‘t forgotten,” he said afterwards.

“I was in control and I just wanted to show it was the last lap and I am not feeling any of the nerves or pressure so I am going to do my fastest lap of the race on the last lap, just to remind people, ‘I got this’.”

Daniel Ricciardo breaks through in chaotic Italian GP

Ricciardo, whose other seven wins were all with Red Bull, had started on the front row and seized the lead from Verstappen at the start - and he completed his day with a bonus point for fastest lap and the award of 'Driver of the Day' by fans.

The result, on pace and merit, was a perfect reply from the Australian to his critics after he'd been struggling to get to grips with the McLaren and had been overshadowed by Norris since joining from Renault at the end of last year.

"For anyone who thought I'd left, I never left," he said over the radio after taking the chequered flag. "I just moved aside for a while."

Valtteri Bottas took third for Mercedes after winning the Saturday sprint race and then starting at the back of the grid due to engine penalties.

Daniel Ricciardo put himself in the perfect position to win the Italian Grand Prix, earning McLaren their first F1 victory since 2012. (Photo by Dan Istitene - Formula 1/Formula 1 via Getty Images)
Daniel Ricciardo put himself in the perfect position to win the Italian Grand Prix, earning McLaren their first F1 victory since 2012. (Photo by Dan Istitene - Formula 1/Formula 1 via Getty Images)

The Finn finished fourth on track but Red Bull's Sergio Perez ahead of him had a five second penalty that dropped the Mexican down to fifth with Ferrari's Charles Leclerc fourth.

Verstappen and Hamilton had earlier collided and crashed out after their pitstops, with Verstappen's Red Bull lifting off the kerb and ending up on top of Hamilton's Mercedes in the gravel, with the halo head protection device keeping the champion out of harm's way.

Both climbed out after the accident at the first chicane, with Verstappen's five-point lead in the championship unchanged.

But Verstappen will have a three-place grid drop at the Russian Grand Prix after stewards ruled he was mainly to blame.

The stewards also gave Verstappen two penalty points, his first in the current 12-month period.

With AAP

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