Tsunoda contract extension was never in doubt for Tost

AlphaTauri Formula 1 boss Franz Tost says there was never a doubt that Yuki Tsunoda would get a new contract with the team beyond the 2021 season.

Tsunoda contract extension was never in doubt for Tost

Rookie Tsunoda arrived in F1 with high expectations, but has endured an erratic campaign so far, with several crashes in the first half of the season and being overshadowed by team-mate Pierre Gasly.

AlphaTauri announced earlier this month that it would retain both Gasly and Tsunoda for 2022, and the Japanese driver admitted he was surprised to have his contract extended given his on-track performances so far.

"To be honest, my first half of the season was quite inconsistent. From my side I was a bit surprised I'll be staying next year," he said.

But Tost insists Red Bull's sister team was always committed to giving Tsunoda more time to develop.

Asked by Autosport if there was ever a doubt that Tsunoda would get a new deal, Tost said: "For me personally no, because nowadays if you bring a rookie into Formula 1, you must give him time.

"Formula 1 is really so complex, is so difficult. Yuki so far has done a reasonably good job. He was fast, he finished in Budapest in sixth position, and his first race he was ninth in Bahrain.

"Of course, he had some crashes, but I always say the crash period is part of the education process. How will someone find the limit if he is not allowed to crash?"

Yuki Tsunoda, AlphaTauri

Yuki Tsunoda, AlphaTauri

Photo by: Charles Coates / Motorsport Images

While Tost says he hopes Tsunoda's "crash period is finished now", he recognises the remaining races of the season are also likely to be difficult for the rookie driver.

"We are looking forward for the second half of the season. Although it will not be an easy one because all these young drivers don't know neither America nor Mexico, nor Sao Paolo, nor Turkey, Saudi Arabia no one knows," Tost said.

"That means there's a lot of work in front of us to bring him on a good level. But on the side of Pierre Gasly, who is for me one of the fastest drivers in Formula 1 nowadays, he can learn a lot.

"I think that he will close this gap and I'm looking forward for this driver lined up next year when we have a new car, that at least there we have constant and that's important for us."

Read Also:

Tost also thinks that giving Tsunoda a new contract relatively early will help him rebuild his confidence.

"Of course, this helps, because he knows he is with the team," he added. "And as I mentioned already before, the second half of the season will not become so easy as he is on race tracks which he doesn't know.

"But nevertheless, he is improving his performance, he's doing a good job and therefore, parallel to this, he will also improve his self-confidence.

"And of course, if you crash with a Formula 1 car at higher speed it's not an easy one, just to take it away. But I think that Yuki has the nature to get back his self-confidence and as more laps as he's doing as better it will be."

shares
comments

Related video

The forgotten F1 comeback that began Jordan’s odyssey 
Previous article

The forgotten F1 comeback that began Jordan’s odyssey 

Next article

Bottas to compete in 2022 Race of Champions in Sweden

Bottas to compete in 2022 Race of Champions in Sweden
The bold F1 DRS experiment that could end the debate forever Plus

The bold F1 DRS experiment that could end the debate forever

OPINION: The effectiveness of DRS in Formula 1 remains a topic of debate as the winter break gives a chance for reflection on the racing we saw in 2022. For all of its detractors, perhaps an experiment where DRS is cast aside and the impact this has on racing is in order to truly understand its merits in modern F1

The sliding doors moment that saved Red Bull and Porsche Plus

The sliding doors moment that saved Red Bull and Porsche

OPINION: Everything looked set for Red Bull and Porsche to join forces for the 2026 season, before the marriage between both parties was called off. While at the time it looked like a major coup for Formula 1 in gaining both VW Group powerhouses Audi and Porsche for 2026, Red Bull and Porsche have really been spared a potentially fractious relationship.

How Tyrrell’s post-Stewart era descended into a fight to survive Plus

How Tyrrell’s post-Stewart era descended into a fight to survive

Glory days for Tyrrell became increasingly infrequent
 after Jackie Stewart’s retirement. But in the latest instalment of his history of the team for Autosport's sister title GP Racing, 
MAURICE HAMILTON recalls how Ken Tyrrell’s plucky and defiantly small team stayed bold enough to innovate – springing a surprise with F1’s first six-wheeled car

Formula 1
Dec 6, 2022
The forgettable final car of a former F1 giant that gave Damon Hill his start Plus

The forgettable final car of a former F1 giant that gave Damon Hill his start

While it launched the F1 career 
of a future world champion, STUART CODLING recalls that the BT60 was also the final nail in the coffin of a once-great marque 30 years ago. Here is its story

Formula 1
Dec 5, 2022
How departing F1 boss Brawn views F1’s new rules - and the future Plus

How departing F1 boss Brawn views F1’s new rules - and the future

Multiple-title-winning designer and team boss Ross Brawn is finally leaving Formula 1 after nearly 50 years in motorsport. But he still has plenty of insights on what’s working and what comes next, as he revealed to Autosport in a far-reaching exclusive interview in Abu Dhabi

Formula 1
Dec 2, 2022
The key F1 management call Ferrari must make to avoid more defeat Plus

The key F1 management call Ferrari must make to avoid more defeat

OPINION: Mattia Binotto’s departure from Ferrari will naturally bring a range of changes across the Formula 1 team. But how the changes shape up and the impact they could have is set to be dictated by a key direction Ferrari’s top dogs will need to pick

Formula 1
Nov 30, 2022
The difference between Mercedes’ stumble and the fall of F1 giants Plus

The difference between Mercedes’ stumble and the fall of F1 giants

OPINION: Mercedes endured its worst season of the hybrid Formula 1 era, but was mercifully spared its first winless campaign in over a decade late on. It has owned up to the mistakes it made which led to its troubled W13. And while its task to return to title-challenging contention is not small, its 2022 season seems more like a blip than the beginning of a downward spiral.

Formula 1
Nov 29, 2022
The physical focus bringing out the best of an F1 midfield star Plus

The physical focus bringing out the best of an F1 midfield star

Esteban Ocon likes to point out he’s the first driver since Lewis Hamilton to emerge from a spell as Fernando Alonso’s team-mate with a superior overall points record. While some may disagree, as LUKE SMITH discovered, the 2021 Hungarian GP winner reckons it’s not just luck which has made him France’s pre-eminent Formula 1 driver of the moment…

Formula 1
Nov 28, 2022