Tsunoda was just 'a lazy b*stard' before moving to Italy

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AlphaTauri's Yuki Tsunoda says his move earlier this season from the UK to Italy resulted in more productive days that improved his preparations for F1's race weekends.

The 21-year-old Japanese rookie enjoyed a strong debut in F1's opening round in Bahrain where he finished an impressive P9.

But Tsunoda stumbled thereafter with messy qualifying sessions and races as well as the odd crash, a situation that encouraged Red Bull motorsport boss Helmut Marko to relocate the young charger from Milton Keynes to Faenza after the Monaco Grand Prix weekend.

The move brought Tsunoda closer to his team's factory where he put his time to good use as a professional racing driver and could focus on his race preparations.

"The move helped me in terms of preparation," said Tsunoda, quoted by Italy's Autosprint.

"Before coming to Italy I was just a lazy b*stard. After training I would go straight home, turn on my PlayStation 5 and play all day, just trying to have fun.

"I think that was the reason why, as I approached the weekend, I had the feeling I had done everything frantically. I was only just starting to prepare for race week and I think it was too late.

"Comparing myself to other drivers as well, I thought about it and prepared a lot more.

"I’m a rookie and I needed more preparation than the more experienced drivers, and I think I’ve done some useful things since then.

"Some aspects improved after I moved to Italy. After the race, we went back to the factory to review the races to understand what the problems were, and this approach made a difference."

Tsunoda's plans during F1's winter break include a trip back to his homeland to "recharge" his batteries while devoting most of his time to his physical preparations, an area he vows to improve for 2022.

"First, I’ll go back to Japan and recharge myself," he said. "Since February I didn’t go back to Japan. I’ve really missed Japanese food, so I have to recharge first that one.

"But at the same time, of course, I need to improve myself – especially [on the] fitness side.

"So of course I’ll keep pushing on those things to improve myself, and also have a good start in 2022 at the first race in Bahrain.

"That’s pretty much how I’ll do the off-season. I won’t be, like, fully rested or drinking beer or whatever. It will be a tough off-season, but to have a good start I need those things."

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