Yuki Tsunoda calls for AlphaTauri updates ‘as soon as possible’ after Bahrain GP

Henry Valantine
Yuki Tsunoda in the pit lane. Bahrain March 2023.

AlphaTauri driver Yuki Tsunoda unclips his helmet strap walking in the pit lane. Bahrain March 2023.

Yuki Tsunoda hopes to see “good updates” brought to AlphaTauri as soon as they can after a tricky start to the season in Bahrain.

The team looked to be competing at the back of the field alongside Williams in the early part of the weekend, and while Tsunoda was able to make headway in the midfield in the race on Sunday, he narrowly missed out on scoring a point in finishing behind Alex Albon come the chequered flag.

When discussing specifics of what he would like to see changed on the AT04, Tsunoda said his main targets are for the car to have more grip and less drag in the coming races, reasoning that it was difficult for him to keep up his pace when following other cars during the Bahrain Grand Prix.

“So frustrating that I’m just stuck behind the Williams, so close to scoring points at the end,” Tsunoda told media including PlanetF1.com in Bahrain.

“It was really hard to maintain pace or kind of okay pace. We are still far away from I think the pace we wanted, to basically drive behind the cars there is sliding around and overheat[ing] the tyres, so we just need more grip in general.

“Hopefully we can develop through the season but we just need more as soon as possible, good updates [as] well, since we continue like this all year.”

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The AlphaTauri driver admitted the result was stronger than he perhaps anticipated when the weekend had got underway in Bahrain, with the team having struggled to get on the pace of their rivals.

He confirmed he knew when upgrades are due to arrive on the car but remained tight-lipped as to exactly when, though he said he and the team will work behind the scenes to improve where they can in the meantime, as they look to improve on last season’s disappointing P9 result in the Constructors’ Championship.

“We started P18, P19 in the race weekend; we just have to take it,” Tsunoda added.

“There is a bit of frustration but [we will] just continue like this, we’ll understand the car more and we need good updates for a start.”

Additional reporting by Thomas Maher