Honda confirm Yuki Tsunoda plans for after Red Bull split

Thomas Maher
Yuki Tsunoda, RB, 2024 Japanese Grand Prix.

Yuki Tsunoda's links with Honda should survive the manufacturer's split with the Red Bull teams.

Honda aims to continue supporting Yuki Tsunoda once they swap their engine supply from the Red Bull teams to Aston Martin.

Honda will split with Red Bull and the RB team after 2025 but wants to continue to keep a “close eye” on Yuki Tsunoda when they switch their supply deal to Aston Martin.

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Tsunoda remains under contract with the junior Red Bull team, with his deal set to expire after this season. The young Japanese driver had been linked with a seat at Aston Martin for next season, ahead of the team’s swap to Honda power, with that door now apparently shut following the team’s re-signing of Fernando Alonso.

Tsunoda was allegedly fortunate to get the nod for the second RB seat this season, with Liam Lawson a threat for the cockpit alongside the returning Daniel Ricciardo – Tsunoda was reported to have needed Honda’s intervention in order to retain his seat.

Having duly impressed during the opening handful of races this season as Tsunoda has usually had the upper hand on Ricciardo, Honda CEO Koji Watanabe is hopeful Tsunoda – a product of the Honda Formula Dream Project – can secure a seat with Red Bull in 2025.

“I think it’s a very nice story that Tsunoda first plays an active role at RB and then gets promoted to Red Bull,” Watanabe told

“Even if it’s only after we leave, we’d like to keep an eye on him moving up to the top teams.

“Tsunoda graduated from the Honda Racing School and it is our dream that HRC students can become top drivers. So it’s really important that Yuki becomes a top driver in Formula 1.” recommends

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If Tsunoda is retained in Formula 1 and remains under the Red Bull umbrella, his driving under a rival engine manufacturer in Red Bull Powertrains won’t necessarily be a problem for Honda to remain onboard as a sponsor of Tsunoda.

“It’s not necessarily difficult,” Watanabe said.

“We have to decide and see what the situation is. But we can support Yuki to become a top driver.”

While the Aston Martin door appears shut, given the unlikelihood of team owner Lawrence Stroll removing his son Lance from the seat alongside Alonso, Watanabe said it can’t be ruled out that Tsunoda could be a possibility.

“We still don’t know what Aston Martin’s line-up will look like,” he said.

“Alonso has been confirmed, but I haven’t heard that Stroll has been confirmed.

“I don’t think the probability of that is zero, so I think there is a possibility of that at this stage.”

But the ability for Honda to find Tsunoda a seat isn’t yet likely, with no plans to increase their engine supply to other customers beyond Aston Martin.

“There may be other possibilities in the future,” he said.

“But at the moment we have no other plans. At the moment, we are not yet at the stage where we are expanding our customer team,” explains Watanabe.

With Tsunoda a contender for the Red Bull seat currently unconfirmed alongside Max Verstappen, the Japanese driver said he is hopeful he’s working himself into being strongly considered.

“Hopefully they will consider it,” said Tsunoda.

“I think at the same time, I’ll do as much as I can to show the performance even to the other teams.

“I just want to increase my value as a driver, that I can fight pretty strong.

“Obviously, I don’t know what’s going on with Red Bull, but hopefully, they will strongly consider it as well.”

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