Daniel Ricciardo, McLaren, Algarve, 2021

Revealed: Ricciardo explains his plan to give Abiteboul a ‘Honey Badger’ tattoo

2021 Portuguese Grand Prix

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Daniel Ricciardo has revealed the design of the tattoo he intends to give Cyril Abiteboul after winning a bet with his former team principal.

Abiteboul agreed to have a tattoo, the design of which would be Ricciardo’s choice, if the driver scored a podium finish while the pair were at Renault last year. Ricciardo won the bet by finishing third in the Eifel Grand Prix at the Nurburgring.

Speaking in an interview for RaceFans, Ricciardo confirmed for the first time his plans for the tattoo design. It will include the ‘Honey Badger’ motif which he has featured on his helmet for several years.

“Ultimately what I want to do is get a very like traditional tattoo, like a pair of shaking hands,” Ricciardo explained. “That kind of represents like the deal that we made. It’s just a cool, traditional tattoo.

“And then kind of my vision is to have like a honey badger head, peeking over the hands. So like just making sure that the deal got done. I’ve told like my friends, but I haven’t told you guys.”

The pair left Renault at the end of last year. Ricciardo intends to be present when Abiteboul has his tattoo.

Daniel Ricciardo's helmet for the 2020 Tuscan Grand Prix
Ricciardo’s ‘Honey Badger’ on a helmet from 2020
“With Cyril, it’s basically just trying to be in the same place at the same time,” he said. “I don’t want to just tell him to go and get a tattoo and send me a photo, I want to be there, I want to organise it and document it. I’ll pay for it. I’ll get mate’s rates. Pay cash.”

Ricciardo has joined McLaren for 2021, and already entered into a new boss with the racing division’s CEO Zak Brown.

“I caught up with him at the factory last week,” said Ricciardo. “If I get a podium he’s going to let me drive the Dale Earnhardt ’84 NASCAR he’s got, which is awesome.

“He’s like if you win then maybe I’ll have to do something a little crazy so. I don’t want to keep the tattoo thing going, I think that’ll be Cyril’s thing. But maybe get him to do a skydive or just get him to scare himself. [But] maybe that’s optimistic.”

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Dieter Rencken
Dieter Rencken has held full FIA Formula 1 media accreditation since 2000, during which period he has reported from over 300 grands prix, plus...
Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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9 comments on “Revealed: Ricciardo explains his plan to give Abiteboul a ‘Honey Badger’ tattoo”

  1. Roth Man (@rdotquestionmark)
    30th April 2021, 19:32

    Irony is I cynically believe Ricciardo was the reason Abiteoul was dismissed. I’ll certainly miss his character on Drive to Survive.

    1. He really held nothing back from the Netflix cameras last year. Those scenes discussing Daniel leaving were heart wrenching.

      1. Honestly, not like I knew much about running an f1 team, but when I was watching that I thought Cyril is way too emotional in his approach to be a team principal, and I thought he was out of place next to the successful ones.

        Like… Picture any other TP from the pointy end of the grid discussing something like that. And then Cyril.
        Obviously there isnt a formula but… Doesnt seem to fit.

      2. RP (@slotopen)
        1st May 2021, 2:16

        Yeah, those scenes were hard to watch. Having seen that I think the honey badger thing is too much.

  2. Wouldn’t be surprised for this to never happen, but guess we’ll see. Ricciardo made a deal to give Renault two years, but made his mind up after just one.

    Could have just been a motivation tactic.

    If I were Abiteboul I’d be more likely to just go out and get one of a honey badgers head on a pike. That would be keeping the deal as well as Ricciardo kept his.

    1. Where is MR CYRIL i miss him.

      Reply moderated
    2. Joshua Hill
      1st May 2021, 7:29

      The deal was Abiteboul gets to pick where, Ricciardo picks the design.

      Reply moderated
  3. How about a Honey Booboo tattoo?

    Reply moderated
  4. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
    1st May 2021, 2:57

    I think Netflix needs to get Cyril back into F1. He’s needed there. I also think it was good for Renault to have someone representing the brand.

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