Daniel Ricciardo eager for more F1 fights with Fernando Alonso
|By Jonathan Noble||Thursday, July 24th 2014, 16:20 GMT|
Fernando Alonso's praise of his battle with Daniel Ricciardo at the German Grand Prix has left the Australian Formula 1 driver eager for more fights with his Ferrari rival.
The pair raced hard wheel-to-wheel at Hockenheim, passing and re-passing each other several times until they crossed the finish line just 0.08 seconds apart.
Afterwards, Alonso said that Ricciardo had been doing an 'unbelievable' job in his first season with Red Bull.
When asked by AUTOSPORT about how he reacted to such praise from an established star like Alonso, Ricciardo said he welcomed it, but that it made him hungrier to get back out on track and fight again in such a way.
"When there is respect among drivers in the paddock and you have a good fight with someone, and it has been clean and hard but fair, it is always fun," he explained.
"Both drivers take satisfaction - whether you win or lose the battle you still have a sense of satisfaction if you have been in a good fight.
"To hear it from someone like Fernando, who is a world champion, and let's say a leader of the sport in a way, it is nice.
"It is nice to get that respect from someone like that, and it is nice to know that what I have learned in my years has certainly served me well.
"I don't know what else to say - it makes me want to have more battles. It is fun. So if he wants to have another tussle we will both enjoy it."
PROVING HE IS NOT A PUSH-OVER
Ricciardo says that one of his key ambitions this year was proving that he could be a tough man on track, especially because his image off circuit is of him being so easy-going.
"You cannot get pushed around in anything you do, because I smile a lot and seem like the friendly guy," he said.
"A lot of people, if they see my actions, or my face, they probably think I am a little bit soft, or that I am nice and wouldn't hurt anyone. But it is nice for me to demonstrate this year that I can race hard.
"I am definitely not intimidated by anything or anyone on the track. I think even when Red Bull signed me last year, this was still a question mark for them.
"I had had some good races, but I wasn't really consistently showing a high level of aggression or commitment to overtaking.
"But I think that has definitely changed this year and that is good. I am enjoying it. I am growing up."