FIA Formula 2 driver Liam Lawson again made an appearance in the ORACLE Red Bull Racing garage and participated in the post-season testing in Abu Dhabi and was extremely grateful to get behind the wheel for the last time in 2022. The New-Zeland-born driver completed the most laps and set a faster time than current Red Bull driver Sergio Perez.
Lawson made his debut Formula One appearance earlier in the season after Red Bull’s sister team, Scuderia AlphaTauri, granted him the opportunity to take over from Frenchman Pierre Gasly for the day at the opening practice session at Spa-Francorchamps, and again at Mexico City standing in for Yuki Tsunoda. However, the testing session in Abu Dhabi saw Lawson spend an entire day in the cockpit of the double-title-winning RB18 in which he completed one hundred and eleven laps of the Yas Marina, covering a total of 586.191km.
Currently racing for the Carlin team in the FIA Formula 2 Championship, Lawson was rumoured to be joining the Red Bull Team as a reserve driver for the 2023 season, however, the announcement of Daniel Ricciardo‘s homecoming seemed to dispel any rumours that Lawson would be joining the Milton-Keynes based team.
Even though testing sessions take part in a less high-pressure environment and do not allow the scoring of points, Lawson still took a lot of positives from the day and felt that he benefitted from a full day behind the wheel, rather than the usual hour permitted during free practice sessions.
“Days like today are very important.” Lawson commented, “F1 testing is very limited, so track time is extremely valuable and I’m grateful that I got to drive the and to help the Team with development for next year.
“But also, for myself, it’s really important as well. It’s so different to anything else we drive. Obviously, you go from junior categories to prepare for it, but honestly, nothing can. And today the sessions went really well. After a full day, I definitely feel more comfortable in the car and hopefully, I’ll get more opportunities like this in the future.”