Red Bull does not expect Daniel Ricciardo to recover from his broken hand in time to return for AlphaTauri at the Singapore Grand Prix in two weeks’ time.
Ricciardo is seeing a specialist on Monday to continue treatment on the broken metacarpal he suffered in a crash during practice for the Dutch Grand Prix.
Liam Lawson stood in for Ricciardo in the Netherlands and at the Italian Grand Prix this past weekend, and will remain in the car until Ricciardo is back fit.
F1 has a week off from racing now before Singapore on Sep. 17 and Japan on Sep. 24, both demanding circuits that would likely be tough on a recently injured hand.
Red Bull boss Christian Horner said the company does not want Ricciardo to rush back before he is ready.
“I don’t think there’s any chance he’ll be ready for then,” Horner said when asked if Ricciardo would be back for Singapore.
“It would be optimistic for Japan but his recovery is going well. He’s got mobility of the hand and is into rehabilitation now.
“We’ve seen with motorcyclists rushing comebacks they can sometimes do more damage. So we just want to make sure he’s fully fit before we get back in the car.”
He added: “We’ll just take it on a day by day basis and see how the recovery and nature takes its course.”
Lawson, who is in the frame for a full-time role with AlphaTauri next year, narrowly missed out on a point at Monza, finishing 11th.
On Lawson’s performance, Horner said: “I think he did a solid job today. They did a two-stop which is unconventional on today’s strategy. He’s aquited himself very well.”
Lawson’s teammate Yuki Tsunoda is the third piece of the AlphaTauri puzzle for next year. Tsunoda is yet to sign a new deal with next year.
Ricciardo wants to eventually return to Red Bull but Sergio Perez is currently contracted with the championship leading team until the end of 2024.
He sees his best route back as driving with Red Bull’s junior team until their is a vacancy.
Ricciardo returned to F1 at the Hungarian Grand Prix after Red Bull sacked Nyck de Vries.