Australian Formula One driver Daniel Ricciardo of Red Bull Racing.
Australian Formula One driver Daniel Ricciardo of Red Bull Racing. STEPHANIE LECOCQ

Ricciardo feels at home for Italian GP

MOTORSPORT: Daniel Ricciardo has two extra reasons in his hunt for success at tomorrow's Italian Grand Prix.

If he finishes in the top three at Monza, it will mean four podium finishes in a row - a first for the young Aussie.

And the Italian Grand Prix has significance for Ricciardo given his father was born in the country before moving to Australia at age seven.

And as there are no Italians in the race, the locals have adopted him as one of their own.

"I've always had a pretty good reception when I get to Monza,” he said.

"With my family background and everything, I'd be lying if I said I didn't feel more part of it than other places we go to.”

Ricciardo finished second in last Sunday's Belgium Grand Prix, where he split the championship leaders Nico Rosberg and Lewis Hamilton.

"Coming off a good one in Belgium, I'm pretty pumped we're racing again this weekend,” Ricciardo told the media.

The result left him 23 points clear of Sebastian Vettel in third on the drivers' championship.

Meanwhile the race is likely to give Hamilton the chance to extend his lead at the top of the championship given he has won the previous two Italian GPs, and three of the past four held at Monza.

Rosberg, who is now nine points behind Hamilton, has not won at the track, with his best result being a second in 2014.

STANDINGS: 1. Hamilton 232; 2. Rosberg 223; Ricciardo 151; 4. Vettel 128; 5. Raikkonen 124


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