Lawson received messages from ‘all the Kiwi drivers’
By Mat Coch
Wednesday 27th September, 2023 - 5:00am
Liam Lawson has had messages of support from his compatriots around the world as he continues deputising for Daniel Ricciardo.
Lawson was unexpectedly thrust into action during the Dutch Grand Prix when Ricciardo crashed, injuring his hand.
In the four events he’s taken part in, the New Zealander has made a strong account of himself.
Lawson is just the 10th Kiwi to start a world championship race and only the sixth to have scored points.
The 22-year-old has previously revealed that Shane van Gisbergen has played a role in his burgeoning career.
“But I think also for a New Zealander, it’s very difficult to make it to the top in any direction you go, and obviously motorsport, so we all stay quite connected and speak with each other and that’s quite cool to have those relationships,” he said over the Italian Grand Prix weekend.
However, support and encouragement hasn’t been limited to just the Supercars champion.
“Honestly, from all the Kiwi drivers,” Lawson said when asked by Speedcafe if he’d swapped messages with van Gisbergen.
“That’s been really, really cool to see that.
“Obviously there’s not many of us abroad doing this kind of thing, and so I think we stay pretty well connected.
“From everybody, the support has been, especially from home, it’s been amazing.”
It was confirmed over the Japanese Grand Prix weekend that Lawson will not be on the F1 grid next season.
While he’s performed above expectations in his tenure thus far, it hasn’t been enough to convince those in charge that he warrants a drive in 2024.
However, he is first in line beyond that, and it seems a matter of when, rather than if, he gains a full-time drive.
He is likely to remain in the car for the Qatar Grand Prix as Ricciardo’s recovery continues.
The Lusail event will occur just six weeks after the Perth native’s Zandvoort crash, an aggressive timeline for his return.
Barring any further unexpected twists, that event will likely be Lawson’s last official outing with the team until 2025, as he is no longer eligible for the ‘young driver’ sessions.
For those, a driver must have two or fewer grand prix starts to their name, ruling the New Zealander out of those opportunities.