ZANDVOORT, Netherlands — The future of Daniel Ricciardo at the Dutch Grand Prix hangs in the balance following a debilitating hand injury incurred during the Friday practice round. This unfavorable incident casts a long shadow of uncertainty around his expected participation in the main event.
All was smooth until 10 minutes into the second session of the day when a surprising twist took place. McLaren‘s Oscar Piastri unfortunately lost control of his vehicle, spinning out against the wall at the notorious first banked corner of the Zandvoort circuit.
The aforementioned situation was only the precursor to another unforeseen incident. AlphaTauri driver, Ricciardo, who was not considerably far behind in the race, too, lost control of his car. Although he nimbly avoided a collision with Piastri, his vehicle slammed the barrier intensely.
Following the crash, Ricciardo was questioned over the radio by his team regarding his well-being. His painful exclamation in response was, “F—, my hand, f—.” He disclosed later that he hadn’t noticed Piastri’s car until it was much too late.
Onboard camera recordings displayed Ricciardo, post-crash, slipping off the glove from his left hand – the origin of the acute discomfort. His hand was seen cradled as he alienated himself from the damaged car, eventually leaving the scene on foot.
Due to the heightened concern about the severity of the injury, Ricciardo was promptly escorted to the medical centre situated at the Zandvoort circuit. Notably, upon leaving, his arm could be seen restricted with a sling. The prudent decision to seek further medical attention led Ricciardo to visit a nearby hospital.
The question of Ricciardo’s upcoming race is an unsettling one. Should he be unfit to participate, Red Bull‘s backup driver at the circuit, Liam Lawson, may very well find himself lining up for a remarkable Formula 1 debut.
In an even more extraordinary circumstance, there lies a potential call back in the race for Nyck de Vries, the driver replaced by Ricciardo in mid-July. De Vries, still tethered to a central Red Bull contract, might see himself reclaiming his position on his home ground.