Horner: Ricciardo to likely target Singapore GP for F1 return

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Christian Horner says Daniel Ricciardo will undergo surgery to his left hand as soon as this weekend and will thereafter aim to recover in time for next month’s Singapore Grand Prix.

Ricciardo sustained a fractured metacarpal after crashing at Zandvoort’s Turn 3 in Friday’s Dutch Grand Prix second practice. The Aussie’s hand was injured by the whiplash of his steering wheel that occurred upon the car’s impact with the barrier.

Red Bull reserve Liam Lawson will deputise for Ricciardo at AlphaTauri for the remainder of this weekend and for next week’s Italian Grand Prix at Monza.

The Singapore round is scheduled for September 15-17 which leaves Ricciardo approximately 20 days to recover given that he is scheduled to undergo surgery as soon as this Sunday in Spain, at the clinic of traumatology specialist Dr. Xavier Mir who handled Lance Stroll’s cycling crash injuries earlier this year.

Horner said that Ricciardo, who returned to F1 with AlphaTauri just last month in Hungary, was particularly frustrated with having to sit out the upcoming races.

“That’s the thing he was most frustrated about, talking with him last night,” Horner told Sky Sports.

“He’s just taken a bunch of time off, just getting his mojo back, getting back into it and now he’s on the bench again.

“That was, I think, his frustration. I think he felt that the car, they’ve started to make some progress and it’s a shame for him.

“But I’m sure, at the back of his mind, he’s probably got Singapore as a target. But then again, Singapore is probably one of the most tough circuits on the calendar. But nature will take its course.”

Aston Martin was impressed with Dr. Mir’s ability to fast-track Lance Stroll’s recovery in time for the start of the 2023 season, and Horner is equally confident that the renowned MotoGP trauma surgeon will be able to optimize Ricciardo’s recovery.

“These guys, we see it in MotoGP, they bounce back pretty quick so he’s headed off today to Barcelona,” Horner said.

“They may even have a little operation on him tomorrow to just tidy up where that break is. It’s quite a clean break and then, of course, it’s all about the recuperation and how long that takes.

“Any normal human being would probably be about 10 to 12 weeks, but we know that these guys aren’t normal.

“So, it will all be about the recovery process – how long that will take, is it going to be three weeks, a month, is it six weeks? Nobody really knows.”

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