F1 news 2021: Daniel Ricciardo reveals what makes him a “psychopath”

Daniel Ricciardo is often all smiles, but there is one element in his life that makes him transform into what he calls a “psychopath”.

The jokes, the famous smile and the quick wit that shoots as fast as a cowboy from the best marksman in the Wild West.

This is the Daniel Ricciardo that we see in the public eye. But what about the other side behind closed doors, especially when things aren’t rosy?

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It turns out the Australian’s competitive streak makes him a whole different person.

In fact, the 32-year-old turns into a self-confessed “psychopath f ******” and even got hurt when that competitive nature gets behind the wheel of his emotions.

Such a ruthless sporting spirit is essential in high pressure environments, not more than in F1.

But Ricciardo’s obsessive desire to win certainly didn’t start when he entered the sport.

It came a lot, a lot earlier.

“As a kid I was always a raw competitor in everything, whether it was table tennis or Uno, I just hated losing,” said Ricciardo. Sports car.

“And I think over the years and probably with maturity, I felt better with the loss.

“But I’m still in some ways a sore loser where I hate it, you know?”

“So when I freak out or have these moments of rage, that’s when I think I could have done it.

“The times when I was miles away I didn’t throw chairs because it was more of a ‘hands up, I don’t know what to do’ case.

“But if this is a situation where I’m on a tenth, but I know the tenth was on the table and I didn’t get it, that’s when it gnaws at me on the inside.”

The frustration of knowing that a better outcome was possible is something Ricciardo would inflict on himself physically, but he has become wiser in terms of better venting his anger.

But regardless, the smell of any competition turns the Perth native into a different beast.

“I’m probably better at channeling this now and I’ve kind of hurt myself breaking things in the past so it’s not smart either,” Ricciardo said.

“Michael, my trainer, knows when I’m like that to hug and hold me back until I calm down!”

“It’s funny because people probably wouldn’t expect that from me – I’m an easy-going, happy guy – but when there is competition I’m a bit of a psycho I guess.”

Ricciardo will exploit that crazy side of himself for the penultimate time this year at the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix on Monday morning, with lights off scheduled for 4.30am (AEDT).

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