Daniel Ricciardo has revealed he asked Lewis Hamilton to fight him for charity in 2016 but the now seven-time world champion “didn’t bite”.
Ricciardo has long been stuck behind Hamilton and never beaten him in a season in his career.
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It speaks to the dominance and longevity of Hamilton as he tallied his seven titles, even the 2014 and 2016 seasons where Ricciardo finished third, Hamilton still finished ahead of the Aussie.
Mercedes has also had a lock on the constructors championship over the last seven years, making many people question Hamilton’s dominance.
Ricciardo has pointed to the dominance of the Mercedes in the past, even saying Hamilton “isn’t the only one that could win races in that car” in an interview with Square Mile last month.
Maybe they should try something a little more fair, like a combat sport.
If Ricciardo had his way, that would be the case as he revealed to The Athletic that he’d suggested a charity fight with the Brit.
“To be honest, I actually asked Lewis Hamilton,” Ricciardo said. “At the beginning of 2016, he posted a video on his Instagram hitting pads. I was as well at the time, so I was like ‘hey, let’s do a charity fight’. I asked him in person. But he didn’t bite on that one so I was a little sad.
“I might re-ask the question.”
Then they could do the shoey together once again.
Ricciardo is a mad UFC fan and revealed to the F1’s Beyond the Grid podcast that he didn’t have the fight gene in his blood but that he was a “full nerd” about the sport.
In the age of YouTube boxers pulling off major pay-per-views and footy players trying their wares in the ring — or the octagon, or the cage — it’d be great to see.
Who else would Ricciardo look at? Maybe Max Verstappen … or would that ruin the bromance?
“That would have been cool as well,” Ricciardo said to The Athletic. “Max would be a good competitor in the ring. The way he drives, he’s quite stubborn. He’d be a hard guy to put away. He’s probably the guy that you’d choke him and he’s going to sleep and not tapping. That would make an interesting one.”
While Ricciardo added that the only other driver that would make a good fighter was former AlphaTauri driver Daniil Kvyat, adding “The rest I don’t think stand a chance”.
And if any driver wants to try anything, Ricciardo laughed: “I’m still waiting for the day that someone confronts me and I just lay them out.”
But maybe Hamilton’s asking for it.
At the press conference before the weekend in Spain, Ricciardo joked that he wouldn’t be disappointed with winning two races.
“I’ll take a couple wins,” he said with a laugh.
Hamilton responded: “Well you’ve got a good car man, so …”
The Aussie took it all in his stride, saying: “I know, I’ve got to pull my finger out”.