Daniel Ricciardo drove a V8 Supercar for the first time ahead of the 2019 Formula 1 Australian Grand Prix, as he got behind the wheel of Rick Kelly’s Castrol Supercar. 

The new Renault driver turned in a handful of laps in the #15 Castrol-backed Nissan V8-powered machine at Calder Park Raceway on the outskirts of Melbourne ahead of the season-opening Australian Grand Prix. 

Ricciardo previously got some Supercars experience during a Red Bull promotion event in 2016, though this was the first time the Australian has sampled a full-blown Supercar. 

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“Awesome, it was actually really good,” Ricciardo said. 

"I expected it to be good, it’s not like I didn’t expect it, but I’ve never really driven any serious race car with a roof on it, it’s always been formula cars, so I didn’t really know what to expect either.

"At the end of the day, it’s the top level of racing so it’s different obviously to formula cars, the speeds and the style of the car, but it’s still the top tier for tin top racing, as we call it, so I mean just everything, the car control.

"I’ve always loved Supercars for how close they race, the bit of bumping and just having that judgment at that speed is pretty cool.

"With F1, obviously we race close but you don’t really get as much touching because just the way that the cars are built and they’re a bit more, I guess, fragile, but for these guys to still be doing well over 200 kays and be pushing bumpers, it’s good fun.”

The event was arranged by Renault and Kelly’s team sponsor, Castrol. 

"Normally you sit next to a driver and critique them a little bit," added Kelly.

"For me, it definitely wasn’t the case; it was watching his inputs and learning from the way he went about it.

"He was very kind on the machinery, obviously, so shifting well and truly early and stuff like that, which was pretty nice of him.

"But to see the way he got in, went out, and did laps with me in the car with him, and then he stepped it up every single lap, just crept up on the brake markers and changed his inputs to improve every single lap, I mean, that’s why he’s the champion he is, and for me to sit next to him in the car and witness that firsthand was pretty special.

"It’d be pretty special to have that name on the car for October but it wouldn’t be Dan co-driving with me, it’d be me co-driving with Dan."



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