Daniel Ricciardo enjoyed a strong showing in 2020 and while reluctant to do so, he was willing to give himself a pat on the back for his efforts by naming himself the best driver of the season.
Ricciardo steered Renault to a much-improved 2020 campaign as the team secured its first podium since 2011.
Get all the latest F1 news, highlights and analysis delivered straight to your inbox with Fox Sports Sportmail. Sign up now!!!
He celebrated his podium finishes with a shoey and revealed just what he did with them to commemorate the moment.
“What I do is I air them out, I keep those as little trophies,” said Ricciardo on Australian Grand Prix’s ‘In The Fast Lane’ podcast.
It was a different process though when it came to the one he shared with Hamilton.
“But I actually, because Lewis did his first, I signed the one he drank out of and gave it to him at the next race so he’s now got something probably more meaningful than seven world titles,” he said.
His final points tally of 119 was more than Renault’s entire score of 91 in 2019 and while it was not enough to see Renault onto third place in the F1 constructors’ championship, he has paved the way forward.
Ricciardo put an 11th place finish on the grid behind in the final race of the season at Abu Dhabi to take seventh spot and end on a high note before his switch to McLaren.
The Aussie superstar was then asked on the podcast to help put together standings for the top 10 drivers in 2020.
Ricciardo admitted he had underestimated just how hard it would be to put the list together but after a bit of debate, settled on his top gun from the season – even if he says he may “sound like a bit of a douche.”
“I don’t think it’s that obvious,” Ricciardo said.
“Because I think a lot of people stepped up this year. I mean the Mr. Consistent at the top, of course, is your Lewis Hamilton. So he’s going to be there, whether it’s first, second, he’s going to be there.
“Then you go down to Red Bull and Max is always there. So he’s in contention.
“The way Charles got that Ferrari doing things this year, but then again I feel like probably Charles made more mistakes, so I wouldn’t put him there.
“Probably myself,” Ricciardo eventually concluded, laughing.
“After all that. It’s hard not picking yourself, but it’s also hard picking yourself because you sound like a bit of a douche.
“Put it this way, I would put myself, Max and Lewis in the top three. But I’d sneak myself a nose in front.”
Ricciardo did also take the opportunity though to laud former teammate Max Verstappen.
Verstappen took home wins at Silverstone and Abu Dhabi while also claiming nine other podium finishes.
At just 23 years old there is plenty of growth left in him too.
“I think he definitely did a large step of his development through 2016 and then 2017,” he said.
“I also felt like the new cars, when we changed to the bigger tyres and all that in 2017, having more grip actually helped him or suited him as well.
“He was already doing very well and then those cars were more for him as well.
“Everyone says he was one of the best go-karters ever, and on a go-kart there’s a lot of grip in that and I thought maybe he just does like a car that really sticks.
“So, 2017, I think already the speed was there. And then there was still the mistakes which he needed to clean up, even through a bit of 2018.
“But once you clean that up, now he’s just got that high level of consistency with few mistakes.”