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Ricciardo bothered by Spa crowd cheering in Hamilton crash

Ricciardo bothered by Spa crowd cheering in Hamilton crash

Daniel Ricciardo has urged spectators to behave better and like ‘true fans’ rather than celebrate crashes as they did when cheers erupted after Lewis Hamilton’s practice crash at the Belgian Grand Prix.

The issue of the fan celebrations after Hamilton's final practice accident caused controversy at the time, and the behaviour by some prompted further debate in the wake of the death of F2 driver Anthoine Hubert later that day.

Hamilton took to Instagram after Hubert’s crash and suggested that many people, including fans, did not appreciate the dangers that drivers faced.

Reflecting on the events of last weekend, Ricciardo said he was far from impressed at the way fans cheered Hamilton going off – thinking it showed a lack of respect.

“Whether you like someone or not, it is not nice to cheer for someone’s downfall or mistake,” said the Renault driver. “He [Hamilton] thinks the crowd assume the crash happens and we are okay or whatever, and it is not like that.

“Every time we go on track there is a risk and every time we do hit a wall, whether we are okay or not, it still plays something on your mind when you crash. 

"Every time you go back to that corner, maybe there is something psychological there. So it does have an impact one way or the other, physically or mentally and I guess that is where he was coming from with that.

“I do agree with him. But it is also so hard because the fan, unless you race and put yourself in that position, they never experience what we do.

“It is just the nature of being a fan of a sport you don’t compete in. It is hard to grasp or understand. All we can ask for is that if you are a fan, then be a true fan and respect what we do: not only the skill but also the risk. That is probably all we can ask.”

Ricciardo said he never experienced fans celebrating any incidents he had had, as he suggested it was behaviour more akin to children than adults.

“I don’t wish it upon anyone and I only knew it happened with Lewis because I read that he said it had,” added Ricciardo. 

“Having rivals and whatever, yeah, you don’t have to like every driver. But to behave like that, you would expect it from kids but not adults. You would hope they would behave better.”

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About this article

Series Formula 1
Event Belgian GP
Drivers Daniel Ricciardo , Lewis Hamilton
Teams Mercedes , Renault F1 Team
Author Jonathan Noble