Yuki Tsunoda says ‘not much reason’ to swap AlphaTauri for Red Bull

Sam Cooper
Max Verstappen and Yuki Tsunoda seen during the Unserious Race Series in Eisenerz, Austria on June 13, 2023

Max Verstappen and Yuki Tsunoda seen during the Unserious Race Series in Eisenerz, Austria on June 13, 2023

Yuki Tsunoda may be linked with a possible move to Red Bull but for now, he says there is “not much reason” to leave AlphaTauri.

Tsunoda appears to be in a three-way battle for the second Red Bull seat with current incumbent Sergio Perez under pressure from both the Japanese driver and Daniel Ricciardo.

Perez has failed to reach Q3 for the last five races, a first for a Red Bull driver, and Ricciardo’s return to a full time seat has only increased the pressure on the Mexican’s shoulders.

But while Ricciardo will steal the headlines this weekend in Hungary, his new team-mate has been enjoying a very strong season and it was the performances of Tsunoda that arguably led to Nyck de Vries being let go.

As a result, Tsunoda is being touted as a potential future Red Bull driver but he himself is not paying too much attention to that, instead focusing on his current team.

“I am really happy [being] with the Red Bull family,” Tsunoda told Total-Motorsport.com. “I feel comfortable here, [I am] able to just be myself.

“As a driver, it’s good to have attention from other teams, but for now, I am happy with AlphaTauri. [They’ve] supported over the last few years, so I am not considering other teams.

“If there’s an opportunity to go to Red Bull, that will be amazing. But like I said, [I am] not thinking too much about [2024], and there’s not much reason to go outside AlphaTauri.”

But as Ricciardo will soon find out, points finishes have been hard to come by for AlphaTauri this year with Tsunoda’s two points accounting for all of the team’s haul this year.

The 23-year-old’s performances have not gone unnoticed and Tsunoda’s stay with Red Bull looks set to continue as he revealed to PlanetF1.com that early talks over a contract extension have begun.

“I was speaking a little bit with Helmut and he’s happy with my performance which is the most important thing,” Tsunoda said.

“So let’s see how the contract goes.”

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Tsunoda insists though he is not letting any contract talk distract from the job on hand.

“I didn’t get distracted by those things. I just still focus on what I have to do in the race.

“I’m focusing more on the way I have to improve which in my opinion is the radio.

“But what I’ve heard from Helmut is positive so I will just keep doing it like this.”

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