Red Bull junior kicks off terrifying crash sequence in Japan

Thomas Maher
Liam Lawson triggers scary crash at Motegi in Super Formula.

Liam Lawson triggers scary crash at Motegi in Super Formula.

Red Bull junior prospect Liam Lawson triggered a chain reaction that led to a scary crash on the opening lap of the Super Formula race at Motegi.

Battling for the lead at the start of the Super Formula race at Motegi, championship challenger Liam Lawson ended up spinning while battling with Mugen team-mate Tomoki Nojiri, leading to a massive crash.

Nojiri, who had started from pole position, found himself coming under serious pressure from Lawson through the opening corners as the Red Bull junior jumped past the stalled Kakunoshin Ota off the grid.

Liam Lawson spin triggers Super Formula carnage

Approaching Turn 2 alongside his Mugen team-mate, Lawson ran wide over the exit kerbs and lit up his rear wheels to lose control.

This led to him spinning out and across back onto the track, straight onto the racing line in front of the pack. Unsurprisingly, this resulted in utter carnage, with Tadasuke Makino and Yuhi Sekiguchi both ploughing into Lawson’s car – Sekiguchi’s car flipping over as he went airborne over the rear of the Mugen machine.

Former Toro Rosso tester Nobuhari Matsushita was also involved, having failed to avoid making contact with Lawson’s wayward car.

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Unsurprisingly, the race was immediately red-flagged to allow for recovery and assessment of the damage. The three drivers who collided with Lawson were all uninjured, but were out of the race on the spot.

Lawson, amazingly, was able to get his car back to the pits for repairs, and he was able to take the restart. Resuming from the pitlane, he reached the chequered flag in 13th – a blow to his championship aspirations as he hopes to impress sufficiently to be considered for any potential vacancy at AlphaTauri for next season.

Having been in the joint lead of the championship coming to Motegi, Lawson has slipped to eight points behind championship leader Ritomo Miyata with just the Suzuka rounds remaining.

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