Formula 1 news | Daniel Ricciardo’s poignant message to debutant Oscar Piastri

Just enjoy it.

Those are the wise words from outgoing Formula 1 star Daniel Ricciardo as countryman Oscar Piastri embarks on his first season at the top of world motorsport.

Ricciardo made his grand prix debut in 2011 and went on to take eight wins between Red Bull and McLaren.

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A little over a decade later, Piastri is set to follow in the footsteps of the Perth pilot.

The Melburnian, just 21 years old, replaces Ricciardo after a tumultuous silly season punctuated by litigation and tit-for-tat exchanges between McLaren and Alpine.

In a little over a month, Piastri will make his Formula 1 racing debut at the Bahrain Grand Prix on March 6 alongside Lando Norris.

Ricciardo, who re-joined Red Bull after his departure from McLaren, gave Piastri some sage advice.

“We spoke a little bit towards the end of last year, and I don’t want to say, ‘Oh, I think he’ll do this or that’ because I don’t know the truth of how he’s going to go – but I also don’t want to add any more pressure on him,” Ricciardo said.

“It’s really just on him to get involved in the sport, build himself up, learn, progress, and also just enjoy it.

“It’s a big, big opportunity. There haven’t been many Australians to get this far before, so ultimately, he needs to find that part of it as well where he can just enjoy it.

“Obviously, I wish him well, but I really can’t predict or say, ‘Oh, he’ll do this or that’. We’ll wait and see but I hope he finds himself having fun and has a smooth first season.”

Piastri comes to Formula 1 with an element of expectation around him.

His junior career has been littered with success, winning three titles in a row.

Piastri claimed the FIA Formula 3 Championship and FIA Formula 2 Championship, joining only George Russell of Mercedes and Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc in winning them both in their first season.

The young gun is arguably the most well-prepared Formula 1 debutant in recent years, given the thousands of kilometres of testing he’s had with Alpine and McLaren.

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