Getty Images

Ricciardo would welcome NASCAR test if offered (VIDEO)

1 Comment

With Formula 1 off last weekend, Red Bull Racing’s Daniel Ricciardo spent some time at the Texas Motor Speedway taking in his first ever Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series event at the AAA Texas 500. And after getting his first taste of stock car racing, the obvious follow-up is if he would consider becoming a NASCAR driver full-time.

Ricciardo stopped short of saying he would make such a move, reaffirming his interest in Formula 1 in the process, but he did admit that he’d embrace a chance to do a test.

“If Dale (Earnhardt Jr.) messaged me and said ‘Hey, in the off-season, come and have a drive and just have a test,’ I’d love to test one just to see what it’s like. For sure, F1 is still for me for the foreseeable future,” he told NBCSN’s Will Buxton in this week’s edition of Paddock Pass (Ricciardo’s portion can be seen at the 8:25 mark, below).

Still, while making a career switch is not his intention right now, the NASCAR event left a big impression on the five-time Grand Prix winner.

“Very, very cool. I loved it. Long overdue, long overdue for sure. I’ve been a fan since when I was a kid, and finally got to one!” Ricciardo quipped about his first NASCAR experience.

He also appreciated how the NASCAR drivers embraced his presence and could tell he was genuinely interested in the sport as a fan.

“Everyone was just so friendly – all the drivers I met and they were all happy to have me there. I was loving being there, but they’re kind of stoked, I guess, that I was there interested in the sport as opposed to there because a sponsor dragged me along or something. Really cool.”

A personal highlight came when he did a helmet swap with Earnhardt Jr., as Ricciardo is on the record as being a fan of “Junior” and his father, Dale Earnhardt Sr.

“I’ve been a big fan of the Earnhardts as well for pretty much my whole life. To do a (helmet) swap with Dale was – if I say it was cool, I’m completely underselling it! It was definitely one of the coolest things that’s ever happened to me,” he revealed.

Ricciardo will resume his usual duties with Red Bull Racing as this weekend’s Brazilian Grand Prix, the second-to-last race of the 2017 Formula 1 season.

Follow @KyleMLavigne

Eriksson snatches Macau Formula 3 pole from Norris

FIA F3 Europe
Leave a comment

Joel Eriksson snatched pole position for Saturday’s qualifying race ahead of the Macau Grand Prix after a thrilling fight with McLaren youngster Lando Norris and Ferrari junior Callum Ilott.

Norris headed into the second stage of qualifying on provisional pole after lapping almost a second faster than any other driver in Thursday’s first opening session, and remained in contention early in Q2.

Norris was the first driver to dip into the 2:10s with a time of 2:10.744, only for Eriksson to go 0.024 seconds faster minutes later and snatch pole away.

Despite a later effort to try and reclaim pole, Norris was unable to improve his time, and opted to remain in the pits for the final five minutes of the session after using up his allocated tires.

Ilott was the final driver to put in a serious bid for pole position, falling 0.09 seconds short with his final qualifying lap to sit third on the grid for the qualifying race.

Maximilian Gunther claimed fourth place for Prema Powerteam ahead of Ferdinand Habsburg and Dan Ticktum, with Mick Schumacher taking P7.

Yuhi Sekiguchi wound up eighth despite a late crash that brought out a red flag, while Sergio Sette Camara and Guanyu Zhou completed the top 10 positions in qualifying.

Saturday’s qualifying race will help form the grid for Sunday’s main event, the 64th Macau Grand Prix.