Pierre Gasly appears set to leave AlphaTauri and the Red Bull structure at the end of 2022 due to interest from Alpine to replace Fernando Alonso, who confirmed his move to Aston Martin for the 2023 season.
Talks are known to be underway between Red Bull and Alpine over the terms of Gasly ‘s departure, but the deal hinges on whether current IndyCar driver Colton Herta can finally receive the FIA waiver for a superlicence.
In case AlphaTauri gets his signing for next season and joins Yuki Tsunoda, the Japanese driver would become the most experienced driver of the Italian team and, therefore, the leader.
Asked by Motorsport.com if he felt capable of leading the team if he had to race alongside a driver with no F1 experience like Herta, Tsunoda said: “Of course it will be difficult. Pierre always gives good feedback. quality, even when the team has problems, and I’ve learned a lot from him”.
“I don’t expect to be able to perform immediately or give the information to the team immediately in the way that Pierre does. But right now I’m learning as much as possible from him.”
“There is a lot I can learn from him. Currently, we approach it in the same way, trying to develop the car as much as possible, to have a more consistent pace throughout the race weekends,” he added.
AlphaTauri announced in July that Gasly would still be with the team in 2023, but they have not yet given any formal information about Tsunoda ‘s future.
AlphaTauri team principal Franz Tost remained cautious during the Dutch Grand Prix weekend, saying his line-up for next year would consist of Gasly and Tsunoda “for now”.
Although Tost acknowledged that Red Bull had yet to confirm Tsunoda’s continuation at AlphaTauri for next year, he was confident the young Japanese could very well be team leader “if the car is good enough”.
Tsunoda hasn’t known what it’s like to score points since the Spanish Grand Prix in May, and has seen several opportunities slip away due to reliability issues or bad luck in recent weeks.
Although everything indicates that he will continue in AlphaTauri in 2023, Tsunoda said in Spa that he depended on “internal things”, and that the only thing he could do was “focus on myself and get results”.
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