AlphaTauri stand-in Liam Lawson says he is determined to stay in Formula 1 now that he has got a taste of it as replacement for the injured Daniel Ricciardo.
The 21-year-old New Zealander was drafted in by the Red Bull-owned team after Australian Ricciardo broke his hand in practice for last month’s Dutch Grand Prix, missing that race and the Italian Grand Prix.
Ricciardo, who returned to the paddock ahead of this weekend’s Singapore Grand Prix to be with the team engineers, could also miss the Japanese round at Suzuka on September 24.
“Now that I’ve had a taste, it’s definitely something I’ve fallen in love with. And I don’t think I can settle for anything less,” Lawson told reporters.
“I think it’s just making the most of the situation now. I guess we’ll see what happens but it’s obviously very rare to get an opportunity to drive in Formula 1 and I have it now, so it’s just making the most of it,” he added.
Red Bull have yet to confirm last-placed AlphaTauri’s line-up for 2024, and there remains a possibility that Lawson could get one of the seats alongside either Ricciardo or Japan’s Yuki Tsunoda.
Lawson has been racing in Japan this year in the Super Formula, and has competed previously at Suzuka, he said: “It would be obviously super cool to be able to race Formula 1 there but we’ll see what happens.”
Racing in Singapore will be a first for the Kiwi, who came close to scoring a point at Monza, and he revealed that being there for Formula 1 had been a long time ambition.
“My dad, he promised me like every year from when I was seven years old that he’d take me to the Singapore Grand Prix, and we never could go,” he said.
“This weekend, he’s actually coming, both my parents. I’m taking them this time,” Lawson concluded. (Reporting by Alan Baldwin)