ZANDVOORT, Netherlands — Daniel Ricciardo suffered a metacarpal fracture in a crash during Dutch Grand Prix practice, meaning Red Bull junior Liam Lawson will make his Formula 1 debut with AlphaTauri instead. by Ricciardo.
Ricciardo injured his left hand after a heavy collision with the barriers in Friday’s second free practice session, shortly after McLaren’s Oscar Piastri crashed at the same corner.
It was immediately clear that Ricciardo was in pain, as he was heard saying on the radio: “F—, my hand, f—.”
Ricciardo was holding his left arm as he exited the car, and was later seen leaving the circuit with it in a sling.
Hospital checks then revealed the rupture, which AlphaTauri confirmed on Friday evening a few hours after the accident.
Ricciardo only returned to AlphaTauri in July after replacing Nyck de Vries.
In a cruel irony, the accident happened nearly 12 months after McLaren confirmed it would not continue with Ricciardo beyond 2022, which left him without a seat for this season.
Lawson, 21, will benefit from just one practice session before qualifying on Saturday afternoon, but has an immediate opportunity to highlight his credentials for full-time driving.
New Zealander Lawson finished third in the Formula 2 championship last year before Red Bull placed him in the Japanese Super Formula championship this year. He will race in Zandvoort with the number 40 on his car.
Ricciardo’s injury creates a fascinating dynamic. The Aussie driver was widely known to have gone on some sort of audition with AlphaTauri, with Ricciardo hoping for at least a full season with the team next year.
Ricciardo has made it clear he wants to return to Red Bull, the team he left at the end of 2018, in the future and sees a stint with AlphaTauri as his best way to do that.
It’s unclear how long Ricciardo will be out for, but it looks like he will also miss the Italian Grand Prix next weekend at Monza.
After this race, F1 will not race again until the Singapore Grand Prix on September 17.