The misfortune hit Ricciardo, a recent returnee to the F1 grid at the Hungarian Grand Prix in late July, when he crashed his AlphaTauri at the Dutch Grand Prix on the second practice session held on Friday. The accident led to the fracture of one of his metacarpals.
Post-accident, Ricciardo journeyed to Spain on the subsequent day to consult Dr Javier Mir, a medical expert renowned for aiding Lance Stroll in his wrist recovery earlier this season. Sunday morning found the driver undergoing the remedial surgery.
The Australian took to Instagram post-surgery, saying cheerfully, “Had surgery this morning, got my first bit of metal work so that’s pretty cool. Big thanks to everyone who reached out and kept my spirits up. This ain’t a setback, just all part of the comeback”.
Christian Horner, Red Bull team principal, spoke optimistically about Ricciardo’s successful surgery in the aftermath of Sunday’s Dutch Grand Prix. Ricciardo’s seat at AlphaTauri was filled by reserve driver Liam Lawson during the race.
Horner outlined the surgery, explaining, “He had an operation earlier today. He’s had several screws and a plate fitted to his [hand]. It went well, it was successful.” He shed further light on the severity of the injury stating “The bone was broken in multiple places, but it was a fairly straightforward procedure. So now it’s all about recovery.”
Now the keen focus is on Ricciardo’s recovery time. Horner observed, “We’ll see, for a normal human being, that would be a couple of months. For a grand prix driver it’s often much shorter.”
When prompted about Ricciardo’s return to the driver’s seat, Horner only confirmed that the Italian Grand Prix, set for the approaching weekend, was off the table. “He needs to see how that recovery process goes, but certainly not Italy,” he stated, shedding light on Ricciardo’s immediate future.