Ricciardo Ecstatic Following Maiden Victory
Daniel Ricciardo is not the driver many expected to end the six-race winning streak with which Mercedes drivers Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg began the Formula One season.
Yet, following the thrilling conclusion of Sunday’s Canadian Grand Prix at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, it was the 24-year-old Australian standing atop the podium celebrating his first Formula One victory for Infiniti Red Bull Racing.
“I’m still a bit in shock,” said Ricciardo shortly after the race. “This is ridiculous.”
It has been a meteoric rise to the top for the newest member of the Red Bull squad, who replaced fellow Australian Mark Webber as the teammate to four-time world champion Sebastian Vettel this season.
Ricciardo was serving as Scuderia Toro Rosso’s reserve driver in 2011 when he got the chance to make his Formula One race debut driving for the low-budget HRT Formula One Team during the second half of the season. He finished no higher than 18th in 11 starts, but it was enough for him to get the call to join the Toro Rosso squad full time in 2012.
Ricciardo spent two seasons driving for Toro Rosso, making an impact by scoring points in his first race with the team — the 2012 Australian Grand Prix. After ranking 18th and 14th in the world championship standings in 2012 and 2013, Ricciardo got the call to replace Webber.