McLaren's Lando Norris upstaged home hero Max Verstappen in an eventful second practice at the Dutch Grand Prix on Friday which proved calamitous for crash victim Daniel Ricciardo.
The Australian broke his hand forcing him out of the rest of the weekend, his team Alpha Tauri reported, with reserve driver Liam Lawson stepping in for qualifying on Saturday and Sunday's race at Zandvoort.
Ricciardo hurtled into a barrier at turn three of the unforgiving seaside circuit, his hands on the wheel and absorbing the impact.
"An X-ray confirmed he sustained a break to a metacarpal on his left hand, and this injury will not allow him to continue his duties," Alpha Tauri announced.
Ricciardo's misfortune came on only his third race back from a sabbatical after being released by McLaren.
Ironically, his replacement at the British team, rookie Oscar Piastri, was inadvertently involved in the incident.
As Norris celebrated knocking Red Bull's Verstappen off the top of the perch in front of his orange-clad army of fans, his McLaren teammate lost control on the banked bend, his car's nose ending up in the barrier with the rear sticking out onto the track.
Seconds later Ricciardo came flying around the corner, ending up beside his fellow Australian.
"Sorry guys, I didn't see the McLaren," Ricciardo said over the team radio.
Piastri replied firmly in the negative when he was asked if his car could move.
Ricciardo was eventually taken to a local hospital as the crane got to work to remove the two out-of-commission cars.
- 'Encouraging' -
In a thoughtful touch the marshalls who assisted Ricciardo sent him a warm message and a waffle cookie, Alpha Tauri said.
Norris meanwhile was adamant he could repeat his Friday heroics in qualifying.
"I think to end up how we did today was encouraging and makes us look forward to tomorrow," said the Briton, who secured back-to-back runners-up spots at Silverstone and Hungary after his team introduced significant upgrades.
Despite losing out, Verstappen was calm about his prospects of extending his winning run to nine races to match the record of Sebastian Vettel at a track where he has won from pole in the past two years.
"We tried some things and the second practice was a bit more difficult, but otherwise it felt good," said the double world champion and runaway series leader.
"The car has a lot of potential to perform well for the rest of the weekend. We will have to fine-tune some things and then I am confident that we can be at the front," added the 25-year-old.
Verstappen had to back out of his first afternoon 'hot' lap to avoid Nico Hulkenberg's Haas smack bang in his way.
"My god, unbelievable," was the scathing reaction of the Red Bull ace. The FIA investigated the incident for 'impeding' but later decided to take no action against Hulkenberg.
Verstappen did not let that scare bother him, quickly jumping to the top of the times, before Piastri and Ricciardo came unstuck, triggering a red flag.
Once their stricken cars had been removed, the session resumed with 40 minutes remaining, the drivers eager to make up for lost time.
The Ferraris looked uncomfortable in both practice sessions, Charles Leclerc posting only the 16th best time in the first sessions and reserve driver Robert Shwartzman the slowest, saying the car was a "real handful" to drive.
Carlos Sainz took over from Shwartzman in the afternoon and had two excursions into the safety gravel.
As Piastri watched, frustratingly, from the pits his teammate Norris was still holding Verstappen at bay, with less than one second splitting the top 16, setting up a potentially enthralling race.
Norris scraped home by just 0.023sec from Verstappen. Alex Albon did a great job in the Williams to take third from Lewis Hamilton's Mercedes, with Tsunoda fifth in the other Alpha Tauri.
"That was a great day for me. I woke up this morning so excited to get back in the car, and from the first lap it felt like we had a good starting point to work from," reported Hamilton.
Pierre Gasly (Alpine), Sergio Perez in the second Red Bull, Stroll, Valtteri Bottas (Alfa Romeo) and Stroll's Aston teammate Fernando Alonso completed the top 10.