Daniel Ricciardo reveals race date return with latest injury status

Sam Cooper
Daniel Ricciardo in the paddock at Spa.

AlphaTauri driver Daniel Ricciardo walks through the paddock at Spa-Francorchamps.

Daniel Ricciardo seems to have confirmed he will be back racing for the United States Grand Prix having almost recovered from his hand injury.

The Australian broke a bone in his hand after crashing into the wall during free practice in the Dutch Grand Prix and has been forced to sit out the last four races.

While Liam Lawson has filled in, Ricciardo has been going through recovery and his final stage is to get in some laps on the sim at Red Bull’s base in Milton Keynes.

Daniel Ricciardo targets Austin for return to F1

Having been out of the car since the end of August, Ricciardo has been getting back up to speed but an initial date of this weekend’s race in Qatar was pushed back when his recovery took longer than usual.

But his race return is finally drawing nearer with the 34-year-old posting on Instagram an update from Red Bull HQ.

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

While Ricciardo continues his recovery, Lawson will race this weekend and revealed the surprise way he found out the seat was his for a little longer.

“So I was sitting at lunch and I had a random number call me and it was a FaceTime,” Lawson told media in Thursday’s press conference in Qatar.

“I was really confused, because people don’t just FaceTime randomly so I answered it, and that was just Daniel’s face!

“And he basically said that he thought he’d let me have another weekend so, yeah, obviously good to be back. Good to be in the car this weekend. It’s a very different circuit but I’m excited.”

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It will be a bittersweet race for the New Zealander whose F1 dream will be put on hold for at least another year after AlphaTauri confirmed Ricciardo and Yuki Tsunoda would be their drivers in 2024.

But even if this additional race came at short notice, Lawson feels prepared for the opportunity.

“I think, to be honest, after Japan, I guess it was looking more likely that we’d be driving so we just carried on preparing like normal,” he explained when asked about whether the situation has resulted in less than ideal preparation.

“Obviously, I didn’t assume I was driving but we just prepped like like a normal situation like I would be. It’s a bit different. Obviously, I want to be here full time but I’m just trying to make the most of this.”

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