Yuki Tsunoda has been retained by AlphaTauri for his third season with the team during the 2023 F1 season.

Having had a subtle confirmation about the intentions of Red Bull to keep Tsunoda at AlphaTauri, the news was officially confirmed by the Faenza-based team on Thursday morning with the Japanese driver to stay with the team for the 2023 F1 season.

It will be his third year with AlphaTauri, having progressed slowly over the years. There are still concerns about his behaviour and discipline, especially on track, but team boss Franz Tost feels that is only matter of time given his on-track performances.

While Tsunoda is confirmed, there was no mention of his teammate in the press release amid rumours of Pierre Gasly leaving for Alpine. Should the Frenchman do so, Nyck de Vries might get the seat as the situation with Colton Herta is hitting a road block.

“I want to say a huge thank you to Red Bull, Honda and Scuderia AlphaTauri for continuing to give me the opportunity to drive in F1,” said Tsunoda. “Having moved to Italy last year, to be closer to the factory, I really feel part of the team and am glad that I get to carry on racing with them in 2023. Of course, our 2022 season isn’t over yet and we’re still pushing hard in the midfield battle, so I’m fully focused on finishing it on a high and then we will look forward to next year.”

At the same time, Tost added: “As we’ve 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 clear evidence of a steep learning curve, which proves he deserves a seat in F1, and I still expect some strong results from him in the last six races of 2022.

“As I always say, a driver needs at least three years to fully get to grips with Formula 1, so I’m pleased he’s been given the time to show his full potential. In addition, it’s a testament to Dr. Marko and his driver programme that we’re able to bring these young talents up from the junior categories and develop them. I’d like to join Yuki in thanking Red Bull and AlphaTauri, as well as Honda, for their continuous support and for allowing him to stay with us for another year.”

Here’s Franz Tost on Yuki Tsunoda’s discipline situation