Liam Lawson revelation by Helmut Marko piles the pressure onto Daniel Ricciardo

Liam Lawson contract detail revealed which allows him to accept a 2025 F1 drive away from Red Bull and RB

Liam Lawson (NZL) RB Reserve Driver. Formula 1 World Championship, Rd 3, Australian Grand Prix, Albert Park, Melbourne,
Liam Lawson (NZL) RB Reserve Driver. Formula 1 World Championship, Rd 3,…

Liam Lawson will become a free agent next year, and Helmut Marko admits it would be “exciting” to see him in F1 this season.

That revelation puts the position of the under-performing Daniel Ricciardo under even more pressure ahead of this weekend’s F1 Chinese Grand Prix.

Lawson impressed as a deputy for the injured Ricciardo for AlphaTauri last season but was then overlooked for a full-time drive.

But his future could now be outside of the Red Bull or RB set-up because he is able to sign for another F1 team in 2025.

Red Bull advisor Marko was asked if he could rule out a driver swap mid-season in the RB team, to give Lawson a go.

Marko told  Kleine Zeitung: “Of course, with Liam Lawson as reserve driver, we have a strong driver in the team who is contractually entitled to drive for another team if he does not get a cockpit with us in 2025.

“In this regard, it would of course be exciting for us if we could see him in Formula 1 this year to get an even clearer picture.

“But this is a complex topic and we have to see what happens next.”

The poor form of Ricciardo has created the talking point about Lawson replacing him mid-season.

Ricciardo was himself a mid-season replacement for the struggling Nyck de Vries last year.

Ricciardo entered 2024 with hopes of claiming the Red Bull drive, alongside Max Verstappen, next year but now finds himself just trying to cling onto his current position.

Teammate Yuki Tsunoda has outshone Ricciardo for RB so far.

“Yuki had a great start to the season and is no longer the hot runner he once was,” Marko said.

“There have only been four races, so you can't say much yet.

“But he has Daniel under control, even if it was close in Japan.

“The challenge for [Ricciardo] was that he clearly had to be faster than Yuki if he wanted to have any hope of winning the seat at Red Bull.

“That hasn't been the case so far, even if, as I said, it was close. We'll see how this develops.”

Marko also moved to shut down any rumours that Red Bull could sell their sister team, the recently rebranded RB.

“I really don't understand where these things keep coming from,” he said.

“Everything has been clarified and fixed with the shareholders.”

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