Tost urges Tsunoda to build on last year's progress


AlphaTauri team principal Franz Tost has called upon Yuki Tsunoda to continue the significant rate of improvement he displayed in 2022.

The 22-year-old from Japan made his F1 debut in the 2021 Bahrain Grand Prix but had an erratic rookie season, picking up seven points finished but also making a significant number of errors and costly crashes along the way.

He was much more consistent last season, even though a weaker car meant he was only in the top ten on four occasions, and Tost was pleased with his overall improvement and progress as a driver.

While Tsunoda had been firmly outperformed by his team mate Pierre Gasly in his first campaign, they were much more evenly matched last year. Now Tost wants to see Tsunoda continue on that trajectory in his third season in F1.

“He has developed quite well. It was not an easy season for him because it was always dependent on car performance,” Tost said in a recent interview with F1 website GPFans.

"I must say he improved a lot, especially in the last few races. He was quite strong in qualifying," Tost pointed out.


One major area of improvement was in his temperament. In his first races, Tsunoda became known for his explosive outbursts over the team radio when things went wrong but he was much more level-headed in his sophomore season.

“He learned,” Tost agreed. “There were hardly any bad communications or emotional communications on the radio.

“He improved the technical understanding from the mechanical side, from the aerodynamic side. He also improved a little bit the tyre management in the race.

"He simply needs to be more concentrated on F1, to be better prepared for everything. It’s all the different areas, everything a little bit more.

"Yuki doesn’t have one big deficiency," Tost added. "No. He is quite good, he is there, but he has to improve in all the different aspects to achieve at the next level."

This year, Tsunoda will be comparing himself to a different benchmark at Faenza after Gasly left the team to join Alpine.

Nyck de Vries (NLD) AlphaTauri AT03.
22.11.2022. Formula 1 Testing, Yas Marina Circuit, Abu Dhabi, Tuesday.

Taking his place this season will be Nyck de Vries. While the Dutch driver will technically be a F1 rookie this season, he's also a former world champion having won the Formula E title in 2021.

De Vries has already made his F1 debut, sitting in at short notice in last year's Italian Grand prix for Williams' regular driver Alex Albon who was taken ill with appendicitis.

On that occasion de Vries managed to qualify for the race in the top ten despite having just a few hours warning he would be taking part.

De Vries went on to finish in P9 despite being in back-of-the-grid equipment. Tsunoda finished in 14th place after being forced to start from the back after the team incurred grid penalties for taking additional power unit elements.

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