Concerning Daniel Ricciardo fitness update ahead of F1 comeback

Sam Cooper
AlphaTauri's Daniel Ricciardo pictured at the Singapore Grand Prix.

AlphaTauri's Daniel Ricciardo pictured in the paddock.

Nico Rosberg has revealed Daniel Ricciardo is still struggling in the sim as the Australian nears his F1 comeback.

Ricciardo has been out of action since late August having broken a bone in his hand following a crash during free practice in Zandvoort.

He is however expected to make his return this weekend with the race in Austin but his recovery may not be going as well as first believed.

Daniel Ricciardo still feeling the pain in the simulator

Speaking on the Sky Sports F1 podcast, Rosberg revealed a piece of information that AlphaTauri team boss Franz Tost had shared with him in Qatar,

“First of all Franz Tost on the grid in Qatar told me that Daniel was still struggling in the simulator, one week ago, with his wrist to do a full race distance,” the 2016 champion said.

“So let’s see, I think it won’t be easy for him to come back and be physically 100%.”

Ricciardo was back behind the wheel of a real car this weekend when he took the RB7 on a demo show in Nashville but a promotional event is far less taxing than a grand prix.

Rosberg suggested the physicality of F1 has only got more challenging as the cars have grown in size.

“I wish him the best and I hope he makes it because it’s so physical driving these cars. In terms of risks, it’s not just steering. It’s also when you’re braking.

“When you’re braking, you’re pushing against the steering wheel a lot because you can’t allow your body to just flop forward when you’re braking into the seatbelt. You need to push against and steer.

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“So there’s incredible forces on the wrist. I wish that he manages to come back and feel fit to race, obviously. And then the five races he needs to do now. I don’t think there’s such a high expectation on him now, because he’s got the drive for next year and I think just needs to be solid.”

Ricciardo’s most recent update came during the Qatar weekend when he posted a picture from within Red Bull’s HQ after a day in the sim.

“Another day on the sim,” the Australian said. “Getting closer. See y’all in Austin.”

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