Lando Norris and Daniel Ricciardo at 2022 McLaren launch
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Lando Norris has admitted he and Daniel Ricciardo both “hated” being beaten by each other on race weekends. But Norris also stressed the pair also didn’t enjoy getting the better of each other as a result of their great relationship.
Norris added they got on “pretty well” and “respected each other” away from the race track. The Brit told GQ Magazine: “Carlos [Sainz] and I get on extremely well. I kind of grew up with him. Daniel I got on with pretty well. He and I were the perfect competitors: we hated beating each other like we hated getting beat by one another.
“Away from the track we respected each other massively. I keep it separate; I can be the biggest competitor I need to be on the race track, but I can also respect and be good mates with other people.” His comments come after Netflix’s Drive to Survive producers hyped up a rivalry between Norris and Ricciardo.
In the series, Norris asks his engineers to tell Riccardo to hurry up as he is driving too slow.
The show has also previously ramped up the tension between him and ex-McLaren team-mate Carlos Sainz despite the pair remaining close off the track. Ricciardo has struggled to get on terms with Norris since joining the British constructor.
Despite picking up the team’s first win since 2012 at the 2021 Italian Grand Prix, the Australian has struggled to score points regularly. Ricciardo crossed the chequered flag behind Norris 17 times in 2022 and finished 85 points behind in the Drivers’ Championship.
His poor record saw him axed over the summer in exchange for highly-rated rookie Oscar Piastri.
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The fellow Australian will make his F1 debut in Bahrain after a year on the sidelines since winning the F2 crown. Ricciardo will return to Red Bull as the team’s third driver with a focus on promotional and simulator work.
Despite his struggles, Ricciardo praised Norris earlier in the season as he opened up on their partnership. He explained: “I felt like a lot of people probably wanted us to be best friends from day one.” said Ricciardo. And it was something that we couldn’t really force and it did take a bit of time to really create a good relationship.
“But in saying that, there wasn’t tension or anything, it was just that we were trying to figure each other out. Currently, where I sit today, I think we have a very good relationship.”
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