Tsunoda confirmed for YDT, but not yet for 2021

Michelle Foster


Yuki Tsunoda will drive the AlphaTauri AT01 in December’s young driver test ahead of what is expected to be his debut F1 campaign in 2021.

The 20-year-old Honda protégé finished third in this year’s Formula 2 championship, wrapping up P3 with a double podium at the final round of the championship in Bahrain.

Tsunoda claimed the feature race victory before racing his way from seventh to second in the Sunday sprint race.

His result means he has secured the points required for a superlicence with some speculation on Sunday that he would be confirmed by AlphaTauri as early as Monday morning.

That confirmation did come, although 24 hours late and only for participation in the young driver test.

He will drive the AT01 on the 15th December.

“I am really looking forward to testing with Scuderia AlphaTauri,” said Tsunoda.

“I enjoyed driving one of the team’s 2018 cars at Imola a few weeks back and I can’t wait to try the current car, taking part in an official test session with all the other cars on track.

“I really appreciate how everyone at Scuderia AlphaTauri has helped me to prepare for this session, and I also want to thank Red Bull and Dr. Marko for giving me this opportunity.

“During the session, my focus will be on following the team’s instructions and giving my feedback to the engineers.

“It will also be a chance for me to learn as much as possible and help my own personal development.”

Get your hands on the official AlphaTauri 2020 collection via the Formula 1 store

Team boss Franz Tost added: “Yuki showed at the test in Imola that he is a fast learner, able to easily get familiar with the car and was able to constantly improve every lap, so we decided to have him test with us at the Young Driver Test on the Tuesday after the race.

“I’m convinced he will make a good step forward having a full day in the car, and this time he will be driving the AT01, so his feedback will be even more valuable for our engineers.

“It’s great to see that the Red Bull Driver Programme can prepare young drivers so well, and I have no doubts he will prove his talent once again.”

Tsunoda is expected to replace Daniil Kvyat as Pierre Gasly’s 2021 team-mate.

Follow us on Twitter @Planet_F1 and like our Facebook page.