System 1: Liam Lawson set to make F1 weekend debut in free follow session at Belgian Grand Prix

Purple Bull junior Liam Lawson is about to get a chance to drive a System 1 automotive in Belgium. Photograph / Getty Photographs

Liam Lawson seems set to take his subsequent step in direction of System 1 racing.

After being introduced earlier within the season because the rookie take a look at driver for AlphaTauri, the Kiwi driver could possibly be behind the wheel of a System 1 automotive on the Belgian Grand Prix when the collection returns from its summer time break later this month.

Lawson is about to learn from the introduction of the rookie take a look at driver programme during which every System 1 staff should give the chance for an up-and-coming driver to man one of many staff’s two automobiles for a follow session at a Grand Prix. The staff should present two such alternatives all through the season.

After final weekend’s Hungarian Grand Prix, AlphaTauri staff boss Franz Tost stated their plan was to offer Lawson his first run at a follow session when the groups resume racing on the Spa-Francorchamps Circuit in east Belgium.

It will not be the primary time Lawson has been capable of drive a System 1 automotive. Late final 12 months, he accomplished 125 laps of the Abu Dhabi circuit in a take a look at session for AlphaTauri.

Nonetheless, it’s an fascinating alternative of venue to be giving Lawson his first run behind the wheel, given the cease is thought for its unpredictable climate, which may point out the staff’s curiosity in seeing how Lawson handles the step up in testing situations.

In 2021, rain closely impacted racing on the Belgian Grand Prix to the purpose the place the characteristic race was suspended for hours earlier than the drivers have been capable of full two laps – each below a security automotive – earlier than the race was suspended as soon as extra and in the end known as off.

AlphaTauri run as a sister staff to Purple Bull Racing and with Lawson part of the Purple Bull junior programme, it is a partnership that makes loads of sense. Because it stands, Lawson is the reserve driver for each Purple Bull and AlphaTauri – which means if any one in every of Max Verstappen (Purple Bull), Sergio Perez (Purple Bull), Pierre Gasly (AlphaTauri) or Yuki Tsunoda (AlphaTauri) are unable to compete in an occasion, Lawson would doubtless be the one to drive of their place.

AlphaTauri have but to verify their driver line-up for 2023. Whereas Gasly is locked in for an additional season, Tsunoda is but to be re-signed past this season. He’s one in every of a lot of seats nonetheless accessible within the 2023 season, with Alpine, Alfa Romeo, Haas and Williams all nonetheless with a seat to fill of their line-ups, with loads of younger expertise urgent their claims in System 2 for a shot on the high stage.

Lawson is amongst these drivers, at present sitting eighth within the standings after 10 of 14 rounds. The 20-year-old has had a combined marketing campaign in 2022. Beginning the 12 months with three podium finishes in as many races – together with a dash race win in Jeddah – Lawson has persistently been within the factors all through the marketing campaign.

Nonetheless, he is had his share of poor luck as he has been pressured to retire 4 instances – three of these being in characteristic races the place there are extra factors on supply – whereas a poor pit noticed him fall out of the factors in the course of the characteristic race in Baku.

Throughout the final two occasions, in France and Hungary, Lawson has been again to the place he wish to be with a race win and three top-seven finishes.

The season resumes in Belgium from August 27.

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