Max Verstappen It was not the fastest of the tests of the Formula 1 in his local grand prix, the one in the Netherlands, but that was not the news on the first day of activities in Zandvoort because Daniel Ricciardo fractured his left hand and the race will be lost. The Australian suffered the injury avoiding the crash with his compatriot Oscar Piastri – who replaced him at McLaren – during the second practice, which was left in the hands of Lando Norris.
Ten minutes had passed into the second practice session when Piastri lost the rear of his McLaren and went into the tire defense at Turn 3, one of the banked parts of the circuit. Ricciardo, who was coming behind him, did not see his compatriot in time and, finding him a few meters away, decided to crash his AlphaTauri against the containment to avoid impact, with the misfortune that he could not get his hands off the wheel in time. The incident also caused the red flag.
The 34-year-old immediately told his track engineer over the radio that he was experiencing pain in his left wrist. Returning to the pits, he was taken to a local hospital for tests, which determined the extent of the injury. “An X-ray confirmed that he suffered a broken metacarpal in his left hand“, indicated the Faenza-based team.
In the statement, AlphaTauri added: “This injury will not allow him to continue with his duties, so he will be replaced by the team’s reserve driver, Liam Lawson, for the rest of this weekend. The team wishes him the best so that he recovers as soon as possible.”
New Zealander Lawson, 21, He will be the team’s fourth driver this seasonalong with Yuki Tsunoda -the only one who remained on these thirteen dates-, Nyck De Vries and Ricciardo.
Also, who He is part of the Red Bull Young Drivers Academy and will run with the number 40 will become the 775th driver in history to contest a Formula 1 Grand Prix. Currently, he competes in the Japanese Super Formula, where he celebrated three victories.
Ricciardo will undergo surgery with the same doctor as Lance Stroll
As reported by the German edition of Motorsport.comDaniel Ricciardo has already contacted the doctor Xavier Mir, who this year operated on the Canadian Stroll for fractures in his wrists before the start of the F1 World Cup. The surgeon is known in the environment for treating several MotoGP riders, including Marc Márquez.
As a result of the injury, and his possible operation, the Australian is in doubt for the Italian Grand Prix, which will take place at Monza next weekend.
Norris and his McLaren interrupted the hegemony of Max Verstappen
Lando Norris set the fastest time on a rough day for McLaren. Photo EFE/EPA/Sem van der Wal
The British Lando Norris He set the best time of the first day of the Dutch Grand Prix, the thirteenth competition on the Formula 1 calendar, during the second practice session.
Norris lapsed in 1m11s330 around the Zandvoort circuit and he was ahead by just 23 thousandths the two-time champion Max Verstappen, who in the initial session had set the fastest lap by turning at 1m11s852 to the delight of his audience, who dyed the stands of that stage orange to encourage him.
Verstappen is hoping to take his third win in a row at Zandvoort, where he is the only active F1 driver to win. Photo EFE/EPA/REMKO DE WAAL
The McLaren driver put an end to that dominance, at least momentarily, and is expected to be the rival to be beaten by Verstappen in the standings in search of pole position, which the Dutchman secured in the past two editions, in which he later also sang race victory.
Behind the back of the avant-garde duet closed Alexander Albonwho with his Williams was 269 thousandths off the best time and finished ahead of the seven-time British world champion Lewis Hamilton, who was 308 thousandths behind his compatriot and confirmed the good feelings he left in the first session, in which he finished third behind the Spanish Fernando Alonso.
The two-time world champion from Asturias could not repeat in the afternoon what he had done in the morning, although driving his Aston Martin he managed to improve his record, as he lowered his time from 1m12s130 in the first round to 1m11s863 in the second and placed tenth, to 533 thousandths of Norris’s time.
Behind Hamilton and ahead of Alonso closed the day the Japanese Yuki Tsunoda (Alpha Tauri), the French Pierre Gasly (Alpine-Renault), the Mexican Sergio Pérez (Red Bull), the Canadian Lance Stroll (Aston Martin) and the Finn Valtteri Bottas (Alfa Romeo).
Behind Alonso the Monegasque completed the session Charles Leclercwho after finishing sixteenth in the morning with Ferrari, climbed to eleventh in the afternoon with a lap of 1m11.915s that placed him 585 thousandths off the fastest lap.
It was worse for his partner Carlos Sainzwho took to the track only in the second session because in the morning his machine was commanded by the reserve pilot Roberto Shwartzman, who closed with the nineteenth time (1m14s403), while the Spaniard occupied sixteenth place by turning in 1m12s093 and finishing at 763 thousandths away from Norris.
This Saturday the classification will be played, at 10 in Argentina (Star+), in which Verstappen will try to regain control to start from pole position and repeat the victory at home, where he will also try to match the record of nine consecutive wins in the same season of the already retired four-time German world champion Sebastian Vettel.
The Dutchman claimed victory in ten of the 12 Grand Prix contested this year (he was second, behind Pérez’s back, in the remaining two) and leads with 314 points and 125 ahead of his teammate at Red Bull and escort in a season in which the two-time world champion seems headed for a new consecration.
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