Daniel Ricciardo may not be quite as fluent in Italian as he thinks he is after calling his own team-mate Lando Norris an “a**hole”.
The Australian made it consecutive points finishes for the first time this season with his P9 at the French Grand Prix, although McLaren dropped four points behind direct rivals Alpine.
His team-mate Norris dropped from his starting position of P5 to P7 but McLaren were able to add seven points to their Constructors’ Championship total.
With both drivers being among the most fun-loving off track, this season alone we have been treated to incidents like Ricciardo smacking Norris in the face with a space hopper at Silverstone.
However, Norris may not appreciate being called an “a**hole” four times live on national TV.
Ricciardo has Italian blood with his father Giuseppe having been born in Messina before moving down under when he was seven, but it appears the driver’s grasp of the language may not be quite as good as he believed.
Speaking to the Italian media following the race at Paul Ricard, Ricciardo noticed his team-mate behind him waiting for his turn to speak. With a smile, Ricciardo told the reporter Norris was a “stronzo, no?”
ECCOLO IL VIDEO AHAHAHAHHAHAHAHA pic.twitter.com/BKCGPJrODC
— Michele🥵🏎 (@MicheleMassa20) July 24, 2022
The reporter then acted rather shocked and said “no, no”.
Ricciardo looked a little taken aback and then said “un stronzo, no?” before saying it again another two times.
Perhaps realising his mistake, Ricciardo switched back to his native English and asked “is it not a good word?” before the reporter told him no, it very much is not.
It turns out the 33-year-old had labelled his team-mate an “a**hole” and when he asked if it was really bad, the reporter said it was “more bad than good”.
A rather embarrassed-looking Ricciardo then said “scusa (excuse me)” before walking away as an oblivious Norris arrived at the microphone.
Ricciardo seemed in a playful mood throughout his interviews following the race, earlier having given his performance “minus 46” out of 10.
“I tried to hold on to Esteban [Ocon] as long as I could. But in the end, obviously he got me there in [Turn] 10.
“The first part of the stint, I felt like I can just stay with him and then when they’re kind of getting a bit more out of the tyres or the pace, that’s when I started to drop off and lose the grip that’s kind of keeping you there with them.
“So yeah, like that tailing off and not being able to then get more out of it is where it’s still…that’s where the race kind of gets away from me.”
Highlights from the French Grand Prix
Did Max Verstappen win the French Grand Prix, or did Ferrari and Charles Leclerc throw it away? Probably a bit of both.