Christian Horner and Franz Tost notes that Yuki Tsunoda is not ready yet for Red Bull F1 season, but the former sees good improvements.
Tsunoda hasn’t had the best of starts to his F1 career with AlphaTauri as he took couple of years to get his head in place. After a better 2022, the Japanese driver finally found his rhythm this year with handsome results considering the car he is driving.
He is yet to finish lower than 11th in the five races which includes couple of points finishes. He is finally showing the faith repaid on him by Red Bull and Honda. But it is still not enough yet for the senior F1 team as per both Horner and Tost.
There is improvements as the two acknowledge it but Horner is certain that he is not ready yet for the Red Bull F1 seat and anything is not going to happen before 2025. “I don’t think he’s at that level yet, but he’s making great progress,” said the Brit to media.
“And we’re seeing he’s maturing as a as a driver. He certainly has a speed and I think as he gains experience, I’m sure he’s gonna become more rounded. He’s driven some strong races so far this year.
“We’re not short of options for the team. We have a commitment with both of our drivers with both of them to the end of 2024. But the best thing he can do is perform at a very high level in the AlphaTauri,” summed up Horner.
With the departure of Pierre Gasly, Tsunoda took up the de facto leader role despite the hiring of experienced Nyck de Vries. The Dutchman was supposed to do well, but has struggled so far to find the peak performance that many reckoned he will come with.
There are already rumours around him with the likes of Liam Lawson and Ayumu Iwasa, both of whom are having a decent season in Super Formula and F2 respectively. But for now de Vries is there and the Dutchman can learn from Tsunoda here.
His current boss Tost has gone extra mile with the Japanese driver in his stint. Tsunoda moved to Italy under the Austrian to improve not only his physical fitness, but also his mental side. He credits his improvements but agrees with Horner regarding the step.
“Yuki doesn’t need good words,” said Tost.”He is fast. He has done a fantastic job in the last two years. And if he continues like this, that he improves race by race, that he shows the performance, then Red Bull will discuss it and I think that he is in a good way, but the rest we will see. He, for sure, needs another year.”
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