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From audio engineers and screenwriters to celebrity makeup artists and stylists, Variety’s Ask an Insider series asks top entertainment professionals to share their must-have essentials for work… and play. In this episode, F1 driver Daniel Ricciardo (and Netflix Drive o Survive breakout star) talks about his new wine with St Hugo and five other key things he’s enjoyed during his summer break.
Anyone familiar with Daniel Ricciardo knows the F1 star is known as ‘Honey Badger’, an endearing nickname based on his reputation for fearlessness on track. During his 11-year career, he’s experienced more than a few engine failures, sticky clutches, pit stop errors, accidents and shunting – all while driving at 190 miles per hour.
But if it’s his bravery in a jet-powered speedster that has seen him win eight Grand Prix titles, it’s another trait that sets him apart from the competition. “I’m an absolute perfectionist,” he says diversitywho flashed his famous double-decker grin on a Zoom call in Los Angeles.
It’s this attention to detail that is undeniably behind his success in every other industry he’s ventured into off the racetrack: fashion, music, entertainment, crypto. After becoming the breakout star of the Netflix F1 reality series Drive to Survive, Ricciardo has not only been partially credited with catapulting motorsport into a global obsession, but has built a personal brand from his fame, that grows as fast as he drives.
His latest foray? The winery.
Ricciardo is in Los Angeles this week to promote the US launch of his DR3 X St. Hugo wine collection, previously only available in his native Australia. Vintages include a 2018 Coonawarra Cabernet Sauvignon and the DR3 x St Hugo 2020 South Australia Shiraz, which retail for $70 and $80, respectively.
And no, he won’t do any frills with his branded vino. “I think it’s too good for that,” he says with a laugh, casting an unusually gentle sideways glance at Peter Munroe, the chief winemaker of St. Hugo, who is sitting next to him.
It was maybe a stupid question to ask. Who would celebrate the release of a quality vintage wine by pouring it into a sweaty shoe and drinking out of it – the disgusting custom of victory that has become an F1 hallmark? But if anyone would, it’s Ricciardo, whose carefree humor (and lots and lots of shoes) is just another reason for his superstar status. In fact, viral videos of Ricciardo sipping champagne out of his sweaty driving shoes may have been the first introduction to Formula 1 for millions of fans who had never seen the sport before last year.
Having his own wine to his name might have given Ricciardo a more sophisticated shine, but he’s still having as much fun as ever. “AAnything I get into, I want to do with passion and I want to have it fun with,” he says, adding that his interest in brewing wine began while sitting at the dinner table with his Italian family.
“Wine was always part of my upbringing and family – dinner at the table, Sunday lunch at Nana and Nano’s,” he says. “Those things were just a part of growing up and there was always wine at the table, sometimes homemade wine that my dad made with his dad. It was just how I was raised and I was always surrounded by it.”
He wants you to know it’s him Not but a connoisseur (“I’m a wine lover,” he emphasizes). That being said, he has brought his signature perfectionism to his new job. The constant back-and-forth with winemakers, the many tasting sessions, working with designers to create an elegant label—all of it requires the same detail-oriented muscles that Ricciardo flexes on the track to sift through past race data or get feedback from engineers .
“That’s the crossover,” he says. “It is the small details that matter.”
Check out Ricciardo’s new DR3 X St. Hugo mix below (and four other essentials he’s been using this summer).
DR3 X St Hugo Coonawarra Cabernet Sauvignon 2018
“I got a lot of opportunities and requests [for brand partnerships] Especially in recent years, but as international as the sport is, I’m obviously very Australian and love my homeland, so the opportunity to do something with an Australian brand was a little bit more important to me. I met St Hugo for the first time through the F1 world and it was just perfect.”
Beats Studio3 Wireless Noise Canceling Headphones (29% off)
“I go with both of them [over-ear and earbuds] but at races i usually ride in the over-ears just because when We’re on the grid before the race, there’s going to be broadcasts, they want to interview us and that’s sort of my lockdown time and it’s my moment to come into the zone so the over-ear is more obvious and that way they know , that I listen to music, I’m in my zone – it’s basically my way of saying don’t touch me. I have to adjust too she and I got cool little designs and stuff that we had some fun with it too. You are not subtle.”
The Noir 29
“The original for me was Santal 33, that was the first where I was what this stuff is like pretty damn Well. But I like them bay 19, The Noire. I would probably say Thé Noire is my favorite lately. I also smelled Thé Matcha 26 on the other Day What I want to say was a bit more feminine, but I really liked it, that was special.
“The neck is so important for staying in shape with F1, so a custom-made neck strap helps train those muscles. We like to do all our strength and resistance training with it, so I carry it with me everywhere. You also need to keep your neck training goingotherwise it loses its strength very quickly, so it’s a regular device that I’m going to use. It’s not the most fun, though it is definitely essential.”
Hyperice Hypervolt 2 Pro
“We let masseuses treat us on the way and ‘physios’, but it’s not always accessible because We travel, so a Hypervolt massage gun is cool because you can Literally just be on the couch, watch a movie and just get on your legs or your calves or even your neck. I I love the Hyperice Hypervolt 2 Pro for getting rid of deep aches or pains. It’s the perfect travel companion and comes in a handy pouch that I put in my backpack and go!”
https://variety.com/shop/daniel-ricciardo-wine-dr3-st-hugo-1235332671/ Daniel Ricciardo on his new wine brand (plus five more essentials)