A brief history of ‘the shoey’ in motorsport

Daniel Ricciardo and Mark Webber

DANIEL Ricciardo, you’ve done it again!

No, not a brilliant podium at one of Formula One’s toughest tracks – a podium shoey!

Ricciardo first performed the quintessentially Australian podium celebration at the German Grand Prix earlier this year, pouring some of the world’s finest champagne into his sweat-soaked race boot to quench his post-race thirst.

It was the first time much of the world’s motorsport media had seen the bizzare act, and they flipped out accordingly.

But the shoey is old hat (or is that shoe?) for most Australians, with awareness of the unusual act on the increase.

 In fact, Ricciardo isn’t even the first racing driver to consume a beverage from his boot.

It all started with V8 Utes driver Ryal Harris, who performed the very first motorsport shoey at the Perth round of the series in 2015.

Racing V8-powered Ford and Holden utes is arguably the most Australian motorsport category in the world, so it was no surprise a triple champion of the series would start the trend of the podium shoey.

It was David Reynolds who then made it mainstream in Australia, doing so after claiming victory at Hidden Valley in the Northern Territory later that same year. 

The V8 Supercar driver is renowned for his unothodox podium celebrations, which have previously included throwing pot-plants off the rostrum, so Reynolds electing to use a shoe instead of a champagne flute was definitely in-character.

Reynolds’s celebration was celebrated within the V8 Supercar family as one of the best the series had seen, but it gained little traction internationally.

For a while the distinctly Australian act remained unnoticed, then Jack ‘the Jack Ass’ Miller came to town.

The Australian MotoGP rider blew everyone out of the water to claim his very first premier-class Grand Prix victory at Assen earlier this year. 

The larrikin Aussie put the shoey on the international stage for the first time, swigging big gulps of victory champagne from his boot in spectacular fashion.

A few short weeks later and Ricciardo was following suit in Germany. 

Now Mark Webber has joined the list of Aussies performing shoeys on the podium, with second place-getter Ricciardo nonchalantly pouring champagne into his race boot as Webber interviewed race winner Nico Rosberg, before presenting it to his countryman and insisting the Porsche LMP1 driver take a swing.

“I think we just made our country even more proud,” Ricciardo said as Webber wiped a mixture of foot sweat and champagne from his chin.


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