Daniel Ricciardo is known to be motivated by betting. In 2020 he bet Renault team boss Cyril Abiteboul that if he placed well enough, he had to get a tattoo of Daniel’s choosing. Back before the 2021 season began, when Ricciardo joined the papaya orange team, Zak Brown initiated a bet that if the Aussie were to get a McLaren back on the podium this season, he’d get a chance to test drive one of Mr. Brown’s cars from his private race car collection.
As you surely know by now Daniel did more than get his McLaren on the podium, he led a Macca 1-2 finish at a very weird Italian Grand Prix back in September. Not only did Daniel win the bet, but he blew the requirements out of the water.
The car in Brown’s collection which he’s chosen to drive, and the one Zak was almost positive he would choose from the get go, is the period-correct NASCAR Chevrolet Monte Carlo stock car once driven by Dale Earnhardt. As a hero of the sport, and personal hero of the Australian F1 driver, it was pretty much a no-brainer for him. Brown owns some pretty impressive hardware, but given the opportunity to drive an Ex-Earnhardt car is one that just can’t be passed up. Ricciardo races the number 3 for a reason.
Just a few weeks after his race victory, Ricciardo will step onboard the Wrangler-sponsored Chevy in the run up to the United States Grand Prix next weekend at Circuit of the Americas. The car, which raced in 1984 as The Intimidator’s first season with Richard Childress Racing, was winning races five years before Ricciardo was even born.
As a fan of both Ricciardo and Earnhardt, I’m very much looking forward to seeing this pairing come together at COTA. I’ll be attending the race, and was already stoked to heck, but this adds just another layer of awesome to the trip. Let’s go!