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Tsunoda: More self-control over "heated" F1 moments "the thing I have to improve”

RB driver Yuki Tsunoda reckons having more self-control over “getting heated” during difficult on-track moments is “the thing I have to improve” as he progresses in his Formula 1 career.

Yuki Tsunoda, RB F1 Team

Photo by: Red Bull Content Pool

Tsunoda was at the centre of a controversy in F1’s 2024’s season opener in Bahrain, as a result of his initial refusal to obey an RB team order to allow team-mate Daniel Ricciardo to pass and also over his driving towards the Australian on the race’s cooldown lap.

Ricciardo felt the first element cost him a shot to attack Haas’ Kevin Magnussen late in the Bahrain event, while the pair nearly collided following the chequered flag.

Tsunoda locked up aggressively overtaking his team-mate at Bahrain’s downhill Turn 8 hairpin, then he brought his VCARB 01 very close to the sister car as they carried on their journey back to the pits.

The pair disagreed on the decision to enact the team order immediately afterwards, with Ricciardo then revealing as F1 reconvened for this weekend’s Jeddah race that they ultimately ended up “in a better place” after discussing the situation with RB’s management.

Speaking later on Wednesday in the pre-event press conference in Saudi Arabia, Tsunoda was asked why his Red Bull employer would want to promote a driver who struggles to control their emotions.

This is as the Red Bull senior team considers its 2025 driver line-up amid uncertainty continuing to fall on Sergio Perez.

Yuki Tsunoda, RB F1 Team VCARB 01

Yuki Tsunoda, RB F1 Team VCARB 01

Photo by: Red Bull Content Pool

“It's the thing I have to improve, for sure,” Tsunoda replied.

“And yeah, if I do those things again, for sure, it will be more issues. And I know these are things I have to improve mainly.

“I'm working on it. And yes, I'll for sure improve.

“I need more than two steps, not just like one step, for example. And I have confidence that I can prove that.

“And it's up to them if they want me or not, I think, for the rest of the things.

“But yeah, mainly focusing on those, self-control, [and] other than that I have pretty good confidence. I'm achieving most of it and I just keep improving.”

Tsunoda said of his initial radio messages querying RB’s team order that, “in the moment, I was a bit heated”.

“I was quite getting heating moments in my brain,” he continued.

“But yeah, I still let him through in the end. Probably a lap later or half a lap later.

“So, probably that was the thing. In the end, the team thought they had more chance [with Ricciardo ahead], and I respect that.”

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