F1’s Daniel Ricciardo gets jump — albeit briefly — on a F/A-18 Hornet Air Force jet (VIDEO)

Leave a comment

No matter how many times we see things like this – regardless if it’s an Indy car, an NHRA Top Fuel dragster, or in this case a sleek Formula One ride – we never get tired of seeing land-based horsepower go up against air-based horsepower.

Red Bull F1 driver Daniel Ricciardo recently put his sleek Infiniti to the test against a F/A-18 Hornet Air Force jet from his native Australia – and we have the video to show what happened.

While Ricciardo is still upset about being disqualified at the F1 season-opening Australian Grand Prix last week, he was virtually nothing but smiles filming his car going head-to-head – or should we say wing-to-wing – with the jet.

From a standing start, Ricciardo’s Infiniti appears to spin its tires, but still gets the advantage over the jet as they rocket down an airport runway.

But that lasted just a couple of seconds as the Australian Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) pilot Michael Keightly left Ricciardo in his dust.

The video offers a subtle message, obviously aimed at young viewers, about the advantages of enlisting in the RAAF – if you want the thrill of being a fighter pilot – or how to start your path towards potentially one day working in F1.

In that same vein, Ricciardo promoted the Infiniti Performance Engineering Academy, which is designed to train potential race engineers.

In an Infiniti-sponsored contest that ends on April 11, the program will choose three students who will earn a one-year work assignment at Red Bull’s F1 head quarters in Milton Keynes, U.K.

Click here for more information on how to enter (but be cognizant of the eligibility criteria – you must be studying for an engineering or “relevant science undergraduate degree,” according to the contest rules).

Just being an avid F1 fan – even if you live and die for Red Bull’s success – won’t make the cut.

In addition, contest hopefuls must be in one of Infiniti’s 11 “Focus Markets: Australia, Malaysia, Hong Kong, Singapore, China, Russia, United Arab Emirates, Germany, United Kingdom, Mexico and the United States.

Not only will the three chosen students work on car development, they’ll receive a free Infiniti car lease for their time there, travel arrangements, salary, accommodations and a trip to the British Grand Prix.

Follow me @JerryBonkowski

Audi bids farewell to Dr. Wolfgang Ullrich upon retirement

Audi Sport
Leave a comment

Audi bid farewell to its iconic head of motorsport, Dr. Wolfgang Ullrich, at its end-of-season ‘Race Night’ event in Germany on Friday upon his retirement.

Ullrich took over the reins as Audi’s head of motorsport in 1993 and stayed in the role for 23 years, overseeing its arrival in the prototype class of sports car racing and domination of the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

Ullrich stepped down from the position at the end of 2016, handing the reins over to ex-Audi DTM chief Dieter Gass, and attended his final racing event with the German marque at its first works Formula E outing in Hong Kong earlier this month.

Ullrich was honored at the Race Night event on Friday and thanked for his efforts in developing Audi into a force within global motorsport.

“In 566 factory-backed commitments during this period he celebrated 209 victories, 13 of them in the 24 Hours of Le Mans, eleven in the 12-hour race at Sebring and nine in the ‘Petit Le Mans’ at Road Atlanta,” a piece on Ullrich’s tenure for Audi’s website reads.

“31 driver titles in super touring car racing, in the DTM and in the sports prototype category are credited to him. 57 campaigners were Audi factory drivers during Wolfgang Ullrich’s era and he was responsible for 18 new developments of racing cars – an impressive tally.”