When Australian Formula One champ Daniel Ricciardo joined Renault back in 2019, he made a bet with then-team boss Cyril Abiteboul that if he managed to get on the podium, Abiteboul would have to get a tattoo. As it happens, Ricciardo got two podiums during his time with the French team, managing third places at both the 2020 Eifel Grand Prix and 2020 Emilia Romagna Grand Prix.
Ricciardo has since left Renault for McLaren – much to Abiteboul’s disappointment – but a bet’s a bet. After much speculation that Cyril wasn’t going to honour his agreement with Danny Ric, the fiesty Frenchman has finally put his money where his mouth is.
Ricciardo joined Abiteboul at the London tattoo parlour of Jelle Soos, a well-known traditional style tattoo artist who’s a mate of Ricciardo’s (and is responsible for more than a few of his tatts). It was Abiteboul’s first tattoo – and it’s clear in the video that he was more than a bit nervous. Check out the hilarious episode below.
The terms of the bet were that Ricciardo could choose the design of the tattoo, but Abiteboul could choose the size and location. Abiteboul elected to get it on his leg (probably because it’s easy to cover up, and the design the pair settled on features a minimalist Honey Badger motif framed by one half of the iconic Renault logo.
Then, just for fun, we saw a role reversal: Ricciardo went on to give Soos a cheeky little tattoo of his racing number 3 on the artist’s finger. Good on Soos, but stick to your day job, Danny Ric…
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Ricciardo’s well-known for his impressive canvas of ink. Other fellow F1 drivers known for their prominent tattoos include Lewis Hamilton and Kimi Räikkönen. Ricciardo actually got his very first tattoo, a ship sailing around the world and a lighthouse representing home, back in 2013, when he was on the verge of getting his drive with Red Bull.
Seems as if tattoo challenges are the new big thing in F1. Mercedes boss Toto Wolff challenged Ricciardo’s current boss, McLaren’s Zak Brown, to get a tattoo – a result of an Industry Leaders’ Challenge begun by the Grand Prix Trust, a charity that helps support anyone who has worked in F1 and who has fallen on hard times.
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Brown followed through on Wolff’s wager (much quicker than Abiteboul, it must be said) with a tattoo that honours Ricciardo’s win at the 2021 Italian Grand Prix: his first since the 2018 Monaco Grand Prix and the first for McLaren since the 2012 Brazilian Grand Prix.
Brown also made a bet with Ricciardo that if he got a podium, he’d let Ricciardo drive Dale Earnhardt Sr.’s 1984 No. 3 Wrangler Chevrolet Monte Carlo NASCAR (one of many rare cars in Brown’s collection) – which the Aussie got to do ahead of the 2021 United States Grand Prix after his triumph in Monza.