Daniel Ricciardo and Max Verstappen drew signs of victory ahead of the Japanese Grand Prix as they kicked off the week by learning the ancient Japanese art of Shodo (Japanese Calligraphy) in Tokyo.
Paying a visit to the Mitsui Hall, Nihonbashi the drivers were treated to their latest taste of Japanese culture courtesy of Shodo master Tomoko Kawao, who guided the Bulls through the Japanese form of calligraphy by painting the symbol for wings before tasking them to follow suit and spell out ‘victory’.
It quickly became apparent that Shodo is an art form for a reason as the pair took turns to complete their characters, for which it is common practice to meditate beforehand and complete the process with a precise brush sequence and stance.
Reflecting on his efforts, which he aptly signed ‘Daniel-san’, the Australian said: “I felt like I ‘showed do’ what real art was. It was emotional and I got in touch with the brush and my inner calligrapher. Honestly, all jokes aside it was good fun. I’m actually quite happy with my piece first time but even if it was something I continued to practice I don’t think I’d get it much better at it. I’d give myself a solid eight out of ten for that.”
“I love coming to Japan, it’s just so different to anywhere else we go. Over the years I have learnt to enjoy sushi and all Japanese food. It’s a pretty cool experience and honestly the people here are just so fun and friendly, there’s just always something new to see.”
More self-critical of his own efforts, Max said: “It was my first experience of doing it and I think I could do with a few more lessons! It was actually a bit harder than it looked, but it was good fun to try it and have a go at another bit of Japanese culture.”
Having completed their media duties in Tokyo, the Bulls now travel south to Suzuka where they will aim to emulate their 2017 form which saw them bring home a double podium from the land of the rising sun.
Photos by by Ken Ishii © Red Bull Media House