Yuki Tsunoda, 22, will play his third season in F1 with AlphaTauri in 2023, which has exercised the option to renew his contract for the following year.
The future of the Japanese for 2023, who reached the top category at the hands of Honda in 2021, seemed in doubt in the middle of the season, when the team announced the renewal of Pierre Gasly and was looking for a partner.
However, as the possibility of the Frenchman ending up in Alpine grew, Tsunoda saw his position in the Faenza structure strengthened and has managed to win the renewal.
Tsunoda’s short career in F1 so far (38 races) has not been without controversy. The pilot’s strong temperament, coupled with frustration over his numerous failures, meant that in 2021 the team forced him to move to Italy to better adapt to his new role.
Later, in July this year, Red Bull hired a psychologist to help Tsunoda, who Marko called a “problem child”.
“I am enormously grateful to Red Bull, Honda and Scuderia AlphaTauri for continuing to give me the opportunity to compete in F1,” Yuki Tsunoda said in the statement. “Having moved to Italy last year to be closer to the factory, I really feel part of the team and I’m happy to continue racing with them in 2023.”
“Of course our 2022 season is not over yet and we are still fighting hard in the midfield battle so I am fully focused on finishing it on top and then we will look to next year.”
In recent months he has lowered his character by one point, but he has already received a sanction for accumulating reprimands and does not have a far more serious one due to the number of penalty points on his license. In fact, Tost had recently asked her to control her emotions.
Now Tost has praised the process of adaptation and improvement of his pupil: “As we have seen since he joined us last year, Yuki is a very talented driver and has improved a lot this season”.
“The pace he has shown recently is a clear sign of a steep learning curve, showing that he deserves a seat in F1, and I expect some good results from him in the last six races of 2022. As I always say, a driver needs to least three years to familiarize himself with Formula 1, so I’m glad he’s been given the time to show his full potential.”
“Furthermore, it is to the credit of Dr. Marko and his driver program that we are able to bring these young talents from the lower categories and develop them. I would like, as Yuki has done, to thank Red Bull, AlphaTauri and Honda for for his continued support and for allowing him to stay with us for another year.
With six races to go, Tsunoda is 16th in the 2022 drivers’ championship with 11 points, and has not added since the Spanish GP in May.
After Gasly’s renewal in June, the AlphaTauri line-up for 2023 would seem closed, but the withdrawal of Sebastian Vettel and consequently the departure of Fernando Alonso from Alpine caused an earthquake in the driver market that could end Gasly in the team. gala.
At Red Bull they don’t close the door on him, but they will only release Gasly if they manage to find a guarantee partner for Tsunoda.
Helmut Marko met 2019 Formula 2 champion Nyck de Vries last week in Austria to discuss a possible deal for 2023, having given up trying to sign IndyCar driver Colton Herta as he failed to secure the superlicence. .
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